Jim Bakker’s video, in which he ostensibly claims that Billy Graham may be one of the 24 elders around the throne of God, was shared this morning by Charisma Mag. Apparently, they think it’s plausible. Jim Shorey, who serves as the defacto guest host of Jim Bakker’s television show when no other notable guests are available posited the question, “What if the 24 elders are the greatest spiritual leaders of all time. Because if you look at the 12 and 12, you’re including Thomas the doubter as one of the 24 elders. You’re including Matthias – who replaced Judas and who you never hear from again – who was chosen by drawing lots. And some of the leaders of Israel were not that outstanding.”
Shorey continues, “If it is the 24 greatest spiritual leaders of all time, could Billy Graham be the last 24th elder? Now, if you think about recent prophetic words that there would be like an acceleration of the Lord’s coming at his death and in Revelation 5, the Father is passing the scroll to Jesus in the presence of the 24 elders, then that means that the passing of the scroll couldn’t happen until all 24 elders were seated…take a look at Billy Graham, a man of the highest integrity…he had a higher level of integrity than some of the disciples.”
He continued, “Billy Graham, it’s safe to say, led more people to Christ than any man in history.” Paul might raise an eyebrow.
Shorey claims this interpretation is a matter of “common sense.”
Bakker’s newest wife can be seen nodding her head and agreeing in the background. You can watch the video below.
Thomas, by the way, is believed to have taken the Gospel to India. Eusebius records that Thomas at least made it as far as the Parthians. There is a general historical agreement that he died via martyrdom in India after the local authorities ran him through with the spear. Jesus – knowing what he was doing in selecting his disciples – kept Thomas faithful to him, and he died a martyr after heading up the Apostolic work on a brand new continent. Matthias – who was chosen by God’s will through the casting of lots, just prior the coming of the Holy Spirit – took the Gospel to Cappodocia and died a martyr in modern-day Georgia, when he was stoned to death and beheaded.
Billy Graham’s corpse, on the other hand, was laid in the U.S. Capitol, and he was venerated by atheists, Romanists, Protestants, and outright pagans around the world. He was not martyred for Jesus, nor did he take the Gospel to any yet-reached place. He did, however, preach a Gospel of inclusivism, ecumenism and pseudo-Universalism.
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