TODAY   |  October 14, 2013

Billy Graham’s son: At 95, dad is wiser, smarter

At age 95, evangelical preacher Billy Graham is out with a new book called “The Reason For My Hope: Salvation.” On TODAY, his son Franklin says that his father is wiser than ever and still eager to minister through his writing.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> 94 years old, billy graham has been preaching to the world for more than seven decades. he's out with a book called the reason for my hope, salvation. his son is with us now. he is the president and ceo of the billy graham evangelistic association . good to have you here.

>> thank you. good to be here.

>> the book will be inspiring as he talks about the reason for my hope. what is the reason for his hope?

>> salvation. see, god never intended for us to die. he never intended us to be sick. he never intended us to go through pain and suffering in this world but sin has separated us from god. and the bible tells us that god loves us. that god gave his son to take our sins. jesus christ came on a rescue mission to take your sins and my sin and died on the cross and was buried and god raised him to life. people don't understand that god is willing and eager and he wants to forgive sin and who would refuse being saved from a drowning? who would refuse being saved if your car was on fire and the firemen were there to pull you out. god wants to save us .

>> and there's that sense in all religious faith and tradition the idea that we all seek in our lives to become whole. we're not perfect but we're trying. that we're on a path. what does billy graham think he was rescued for?

>> first of all, he was rescued from sin. and i believe god has used my father -- he'll be 95 november 7th and he is still sharp as a tack. still writing. just finished a film which will be released all across the country. but my father wants people to know the truth. and there's lots of religions but there's only one person to take your sin. there's not many people that died for your sin. only one person and that is jesus christ . he said i'm the way, the truth, and the life. no man comes to the father but by me. this book is not a cut and paste book of earlier writings. it's a new book and fresh. he has gotten so much wiser and smarter and he is just sharing a little bit of it with us.

>> how is he? he doesn't preach anymore in person.

>> no, he can't stand in the pulpit at 95. i tried to get him to get a hamburger. he said you wait until you turn 95. he said i just want to sit in a chair. i understand that. but he still works and his mind is clear and he wants to share with another generation how we can have peace with god and the only way we can have peace with god is through his son christ.

>> he is of course known, among other things, as a preacher to our presidents and cut across ideological lines. how do you think he was able to achieve that?

>> because he always went to visit a president with the focus of ministering to them spiritually. every president has questions just like you or me or anyone else. does god know who i am? does he care? how can i talk to him? will he give me advice? and my father would counsel them on spiritual issues. you're always going to be around a politician that wants to talk politics at some point but my father would try to get the conversation back to where their soul was. was their soul secure? were they sure their soul was in the hands of almighty god and if they weren't sure my father would help them have that assurance through faith in christ.

>> you had varying degrees of commitment. again, the book is "the reason for my hope," franklin graham , thank you so much. appreciate your time.