A Life Well-Lived
September 1, 2003 - Christianity lost one of its true statesmen, and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan's Purse lost a dear friend, when Bill Bright passed away on July 19.
by Franklin Graham
I had the honor of participating in the memorial service for Bill Bright in Orlando on July 30, by reading a letter from my father and by giving the benediction. In his letter, my father said, "He had one goal in life: to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with as many people as possible, and by every means possible. His vision, his single-mindedness and his dedication were a constant example to me and to countless others whose lives he touched across the world."
I couldn't agree more. With his steadfast commitment to spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ, Bright was a role model to me and to believers everywhere.
Through his work, millions of people have come to know Jesus Christ as Savior. The "Four Spiritual Laws" booklet he wrote in 1956 has been printed in more than 200 languages and distributed to more than 2.5 billion people. Campus Crusade for Christ, which he founded in 1951, has become the largest evangelical organization in the United States.
Perhaps his greatest legacy will be the "JESUS" film, which has become the most widely viewed and translated movie in history. More than 5.1 billion people in 234 countries have seen the film since it was commissioned in 1979. The film is a valuable tool in the ministry of both the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan's Purse.
The memorial service was a solemn occasion. Yet, as we rejoiced in celebrating this life, I could not help but think of King David, whom God called a man after His own heart. The 11th chapter of Hebrews—faith's "Hall of Fame"—also came to mind. Bill Bright's was surely a life well-lived.