The Death and Resurrection of Christ: Billy Graham (Transcript)

Full text of renowned evangelist Billy Graham’s sermon titled “The Death and Resurrection of Christ” which was delivered on a rainy night in Baton Rouge, Louisiana in the year 1970.

Notable quote from this message:

“Because you see, man is in rebellion against God. Adam and Eve rebelled in the garden of Eden. And every man since Adam and Eve has broken God’s law and sinned against God. And as a result of that, God and man are separated. And man’s only way back to God is through Jesus Christ.”

Listen to the MP3 Audio here:


Billy Graham – Evangelist

My message is going to be brief, and my text is going to be Luke, the 23rd chapter beginning at verse 42.

Luke 23:42-43: Remember me when Thou comest into Thy kingdom.” And Jesus said unto him, “Verily, I say unto thee, today thou shalt be with Me in paradise.”

The greatest and most historical event of all of history, was when Jesus Christ died on that cross. And when Christ died on the cross, the lightning flashed, the thunder roared, the darkness came.

As the nails had gone into the hands of Christ and a spear had gone into His side and the nails through His feet. And Jesus was hanging between heaven and earth suffering for us. The soldiers had taken Him out of His prison and they put a crimson robe on Him, they’d beaten Him two or three times.

And then they took two or three murderers with Him. Two of them in particular, who were going to be crucified with Him. And then they took Him across Jerusalem and they made each one of them bear a placard, or at least herald went before them to bear a placard telling of their crimes.

And then Jesus stumbled and fell. He was weak from the loss of blood, and they compelled an African to help Him carry His cross. And as long as the history of man shall go, we will always remember that it was an African that helped Jesus bear His cross.

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There are people today that say that Christianity is the white man’s religion. Don’t you believe it.

For all of those who believe in Jesus Christ, He belongs to all people. He came from that part of the world that touches Asia, Africa, and Europe. He belongs as much to the African as He does to the European; and as much to the European as He does to the Asian.

Jesus Christ belongs to all people, but an African helped Him carry His cross.

And then when they got to Golgotha, these soldiers went about their work, nailing the nails in. These two murderers and thieves that were being crucified with Jesus were yelling, screaming, crying, but Jesus never uttered a word. And they took some medicated wine that acted as a sedative and gave it to the two thieves. And they took it and they offered it to Jesus, and He refused it, because He wanted to drink the very bitter dregs of death in our place for us. He wanted to suffer all of death, showing that God loved the world and God was willing to forgive the sins of the world because of what Christ was doing on that cross.

The people that were watching were laughing and sneering. They said, “He saved others, why can’t He save Himself? Come on, You worked great miracles. Why don’t You work one more? You raised Lazarus from the dead. You raised a widow’s son from the dead. Why can’t You save Yourself?”

Those blind people did not realize that God had foreordained and predetermined that Jesus Christ was to die the death of the cross. And it was only through that death that the world could find forgiveness and salvation. There is no other name given among men whereby we must be saved. (Acts 4:12)

The apostle Paul was an intellectual. One of the most brilliant men that ever lived. And Paul went to Corinth… pagan, intellectual, immoral Corinth. The university center of the ancient world.

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And Paul said, “I’m determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified.” (1 Corinthians 2:2)

Why did Paul say that? He said that, because God has locked up in the cross the secret of the universe. The only way that earth can ever find reconciliation with heaven is by way of the cross. The only way that you can ever get to heaven is by way of the cross.

And if Jesus Christ had not gone to the cross, you could have never had sin forgiven. You could have never gone to heaven. And the problems of earth would have never had a solution. Only by the way of the cross can we find our way back to God.

That’s why it was important that Jesus stay on the cross. Because you see, man is in rebellion against God. Adam and Eve rebelled in the garden of Eden. And every man since Adam and Eve has broken God’s law and sinned against God.

And as a result of that, God and man are separated. And man’s only way back to God is through Jesus Christ.

Man had broken the law. Man deserved death. He deserved judgment. He deserved hell, but God said, “Wait a minute. I’ll give My Son. I’ll let Him die. I’ll let Him take the judgment and the hell for you. And if you will put your trust and your faith in My Son, I will forgive your sin. I will change your life. I will give you an inner peace and joy and satisfaction that you would never find in any other way.”

Jesus was dying on that cross for your sins and your sins. Some people say, “Why don’t you try to make your gospel relevant?”

The most relevant message in the world tonight is the fact that Christ died for you. He died in your place. He shed His blood for you. And without that experience, no one can get to heaven.

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Yes, Jesus Christ died. And the people laughed and sneered. And two people that sneered and laughed the most, were these two thieves and murderers that were dying with Him. They were both mocking Him.

But one of them became strangely silent. And finally, this one that was silent turned and rebuked the other thief or the other murderer and said, “We’re dying justly. We deserve to be crucified, but not this man in the middle. He’s a good man. He is the Son of God.”

Then he turned to Him and asked Him what seemed to be an improbable, an impossible question. He said, “Remember me when Thou comest into Thy kingdom.” Will you remember me, Lord?

And then Jesus gave one of the most astounding answers in the history of the world. The angels in heaven must’ve been shaken and startled and amazed when they heard what Jesus answered. Jesus said, “Today, today, thou shalt be with Me in paradise.”

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