Read Billy Graham: His Life and Influence by David Aikman Online


If there were such a job as the nation's pastor, Billy Graham would be the prime candidate.Having known more American presidents, foreign leaders, and famous people than any other American living or dead, he has been uniquely able to speak to the heart of the average person and bring peace and clarity to a nation in trying times. Graham's ministry flourished during a challIf there were such a job as the nation's pastor, Billy Graham would be the prime candidate.Having known more American presidents, foreign leaders, and famous people than any other American living or dead, he has been uniquely able to speak to the heart of the average person and bring peace and clarity to a nation in trying times. Graham's ministry flourished during a challenging period in the American experience, when the nation was coming to terms with its unexpected new strength in the world and grappling with the most serious racial and social upheavals since the Civil War. Now acclaimed author and former Time magazine senior correspondent David Aikman sheds new and deserved light on that influence, probing critical episodes of Graham's life that help explain his profound impact, both on the public life of America and other nations and the private lives of their cultural and political leaders. Aikman's previous books, Jesus in Beijing and A Man of Faith have been praised by Foreign Affairs, The New Republic, and First Things....

Title : Billy Graham: His Life and Influence
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780849917028
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 345 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Billy Graham: His Life and Influence Reviews

  • Lynn
    2019-05-11 00:33

    I thought I knew who Billy Graham is, but this gave me an in-depth, objective presentation of his humble life. In spite of his desire to please people and want to see the best in everyone - especially world leaders - he remains true to the Gospel. I found the world historical overview helpful.Narrator's voice was suitable.

  • Elizabeth Edgren
    2019-05-04 02:47

    Solid bioStill new to biography reading, I found this book orderly, thorough, interesting, but not riveting. Maybe that's the nature of the beast.

  • Stephen Escalera
    2019-04-25 23:47

    Growing up in a fundamental, Baptist family, I heard comparatively little about Billy Graham and the little I did hear wasn't positive. When Thomas Nelson offered David Aikman's biography of the man for review, I was curious to see who exactly this man was and whether or not he really was the false prophet of the antichrist.In Billy Graham: His Life and Influence, Aikman offers an interesting and well-written account of Graham's life. Recognizing that other, more comprehensive accounts of Graham's life have already been written, Aikman focuses instead on the worldwide impact Graham had through such avenues as his friendships with various presidents and his worldwide "Crusades." In three rather lengthy chapters, Aikman tells of Graham's friendships with every American President from Eisenhower to George W. Bush. Especially interesting is the friendship Graham had with Richard Nixon and how Graham had completely misread - or perhaps had been completely mislead by - Nixon's character or lack thereof.While Aikman chronicles Graham's crusades around the world, much of Aikman's emphasis seems to be on the political affects of these Crusades. Although the longer lasting effects of the Crusades in general are mentioned, it is comparatively little with little emphasis being placed on the specific regions. Given my background, I was very interested to read of Graham's "falling out of fellowship" with more conservative evangelicals such as Jerry Falwell and Bob Jones, among many. Graham was ready and willing to welcome non-evangelical religious groups to join him in his Crusades, stating that even those who denied fundamental doctrines of the faith (such as the Virgin Birth of Christ, the Trinity or even the resurrection of Christ) were counted as fellow Christians. The only complaint I would have with this particular topic is that Aikman doesn't really go into detail as to how Graham could marry holding to these beliefs (which Graham himself never explicitly denied) while at the same time claiming Christian fellowship with those who flatly denied them.Throughout the book, there are two main character traits that Aikman returns to, one positive and one negative. For the latter one, Aikman shows that Graham wanted almost above anything else to be liked and not to offend anyone. This is perhaps what may have lead to his willingness to accept religious affiliations of all shapes and sizes and might explain his friendship with Richard Nixon. More than this, however, Aikman focuses on Graham's humility. Time and again, Graham has been able to diffuse difficult situations or attacks on his character by his pronounced humility. I especially appreciated this focus since it shed light on a side of Graham I was totally unfamiliar with.Overall, Aikman writes a very readable biography of Graham's life. If you are looking for an in-depth biography of Graham, this perhaps isn't the best book to read. But if you want an overall glimpse of the various influences Graham has had, especially in the political arena, Aikman's book is a good start.Thanks to Thomas Nelson's BookSneeze book review program for providing a review copy of this book.

  • Barbara Smith
    2019-05-17 03:44

    "Billy Graham: His Life and Influence," by David Aikman, thoroughly covers the evangelist’s life and influence around the world. From his upbringing in the 1920s through his relationship with and the administrations of the presidents from Eisenhower through G.W. Bush, the book shows Graham’s influence on both our country the rest of the world. This book is chockfull of history and Aikman delivers it in an easy style of reading. Graham saw many changes in his lifetime. He was at the center of many of these changes and was even instrumental in them. Although he had a brief and less-than-satisfactory encounter with Truman, he got close to most presidents beginning with Eisenhower. He continued these relationships with each president at varying degrees. Although a Democrat himself, he was particularly close to Johnson, Nixon, Reagan and the Bushes.Surprisingly, Graham was also able to break the ice around the world. He was able to speak in Russia and China long before any American would have this access. Even when the American government didn’t want him to preach, Graham was able to visit and speak in Eastern countries. Being careful not to say or do anything that would be insulting or dangerous in the culture where he was a guest yet not saying anything that would upset the American government, Graham had a tight rope to walk. He was not only successful but helped warm relationships during the years of the Cold War.David Aikman doesn’t show Graham’s life and endeavors as all rosy though. He was particularly close to Nixon and was surprised as anyone when Watergate came down, and even more so, when the tapes were later revealed. The book tells of Graham’s struggles with his relationship with Nixon after this and how he came to be spiritually close to Nixon again.Graham is shown as a man of God but certainly not perfect. He had charisma and a need to be liked by everyone and that sometimes caused mistakes in dealing with other cultures and governments and certainly in reporting back to our government the true situation in other lands. But he was always ready to listen to God and to spread the Gospel far and wide.Throughout the book we also learn about his family from his parents and siblings to his wife Ruth and their children. Ruth’s influence on Billy also helped direct him in his dealings with our country and others. Ruth was a strong woman and definitely showed it. They had a long and very strong marriage based on love and their beliefs.Christians will get to know the man and his views by reading this book. Non-Christians will also get a lot out of it, more from the history side of his story. No matter what your religious views are, you will come away with a wealth of historical knowledge after reading this book. An easy-to-read and informative book, I highly recommend David Aikman’s "Billy Graham: His Life and Influence."

  • Carrie
    2019-05-09 01:25

    As I was growing up, I was well familiar with the name Billy Graham. I can remember seeing books he had written, hearing grown-ups talk about him, and watching his evangelistic crusades on television. I think you would be hard-pressed to find any adult in America who hasn't heard the name of this famous preacher--"America's pastor," as he has been dubbed.Billy Graham has had an amazing life, and David Aikman has well documented it in the book Billy Graham: His Life and Influence. Truthfully, I was already fascinated by Graham's life before reading his biography, but now I am even more fascinated and inspired by him. This man not only has led millions of people to faith in Christ, but he has also had incredible influence in the political world, having had personal relationships with several Presidents and other world leaders. He has also contributed greatly to racial reconciliation in various countries, including the United States. And although Aikman's portrayal of Billy Graham is incredibly positive, he still does not attempt to portray Graham as a perfect man; through both Aikman's and Graham's words, we see that Graham is a man who struggles with sin just as everyone else does. But his honesty and authenticity are what have made Billy Graham so endearing to people all over the world. Of course, his natural charm helped, too!Though this biography is rather lengthy, it still held my interest. I thought, at first, that I might not like the fact that it isn't a chronological record of events, but the way that Aikman breaks up Graham's life into topical segments is actually helpful in portraying Graham's influence. And anyone who loves history will really enjoy the way that Aikman weaves in so many historical timelines and details throughout the book.If you have any interest at all in the fascinating and inspiring life of Billy Graham, you will not be disappointed when you read this book!

  • Sarah Oyerinde
    2019-04-26 00:25

    In Billy Graham: His Life and Influence, David Aikman depicts key aspects of Graham’s life. In typical biographical genre style, Aikman begins with a brief overview of Graham’s childhood. He continues, revealing Graham’s conversion, his steps toward becoming a world evangelist, and essentially depicting Graham as a major moral influence in U.S. and world history throughout the second half of the twentieth century.The life and writing experiences of David Aikman (former Time magazine senior correspondent) make this Billy Graham biography fascinating. With a writing style that keeps his audience reading, Aikman reveals Graham’s life in light of major world events. He shows how Graham has acted as presidential pastor and national consoler. His portrayal of Graham is mostly positive, however, he doesn’t hesitate to reveal areas in which Graham has been less than perfect.Before reading this book, I had not thought much about Billy Graham. After reading, however, I feel like I had arrogantly overlooked an important actor in history and Christendom. I nearly missed something very significant. I am inspired by the accolades of Graham’s humility and steadfast service to Jesus Christ, and I am motivated to not make mistakes similar to those of Graham. I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

  • Elizabeth
    2019-05-22 23:35

    Billy Graham His Life and Influence by David Aikman was a great book about a wonderful man. I was looking forward to a light biography and was surprised how thick it was, though once I started I read it quickly (I get free books for reviewing them at Thomas Nelson’s Book Sneeze). The book focuses on his influence, meaning how Graham has affected American culture and religion, the world, politics and especially the Presidents. It is divided by topics instead of chronological order, and it is amazing to see how Graham really did change the world as we know it, yet remained a godly humble man who, while desiring all to like him, truly loved Christ and preached him whenever he had the chance. While admiring the man, Aikman was sure to point out his mistakes (mostly being occasional wrong, offensive, silly remarks) though the short ending chapter about his family speculates their troubles being to his absence as a father. It was also amazing to see the changes in Graham’s own view of the world and how to express his faith. I got to see Billy preach at the very end of his career and recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the man but mostly how the man influenced our world today. PS. The greatest thing I learned in the book was that even Ruth Graham regretted reprimanding her children too sharply!

  • Hank Pharis
    2019-05-07 02:39

    I've read several biographies of Graham that were totally supportive.This one attempts to be more "objective." He praises many thingsabout Graham while being honest about at least some of his shortcomings.He says that Graham's greatest attribute has been his humility.This won him a hearing and relationships with all sorts of powerful people.He implies that his worst trait has been his desire to so pleaseworld leaders etc. that he has been too accommodating in his relationshipswith them. He seems to praise Graham's seeming leaning towarduniversalism in some of his statements the last couple of decades.Did Graham really mean what he seemed to say to Robert Schuller,Larry King etc.? Or was he again being so accommodating thathe failed to say what he really thinks (or thought for most of his career)?Or in all of these situations was he "bending over backwards" tryingto build bridges to these people and doing everything he couldto not offend them?God has used Graham in extraordinary ways but like the rest of ushe is not perfect. There is very much to appreciate about him but there have also been concerns.

  • Wayne
    2019-05-20 23:46

    The book was certainly a helpful and informative to someone not familiar with the specifics of Billy Graham's career. The author was not presenting a glossy, hagiographic version of Graham, which I appreciated. He noted some of Graham's strengths and some of his weaknesses. I also enjoyed reading about Graham's relationship with the USA presidency from Truman to George W. Bush. The book fell short, in my opinion, in that in many places not enough detail was given. Too often times a superficial survey was performed where something more would have improved the book. The book also appears to rely on too narrow a bibliography. It also repeats itself (unhelpfully so) on a number of occasions. In the end, I'd recommend this book to someone who wants a quick introduction to Billy Graham's life and influence on American politics, but it would not be recommended on the basis of being a superb biography or brilliant analysis of Graham's theology.

  • Kristin (Kritters Ramblings)
    2019-04-28 03:22

    I chose to receive and review this book from BookSneeze because first mey "hometown" for four years was Charlotte, NC, and it is a city that I will always wish to return to. Second reason I chose this book is because in college I was a religious studies major, I was always interested in how religion affected society and how society affected the progression of religion.SO for my review. This was not your typical biography. It was more of a biography that was torn apart in chapters that organized his life into themes, not exactly in chronological order. I enjoyed the different take on reading about someone's life. As well, the book set up allowed for other people's accounts of the encounters they had with Billy Graham.For more of the review visit:

  • Matthew Hyde
    2019-05-14 02:37

    The author did a great job in covering Billy Graham from a fair view point. The author did not lean too much in favor of Graham, neither did the author lean too far against Graham. The author seemed to keep a good and fair balance of Graham. The book was very informative and helped the reader understand who Billy Graham really was and what his mission was. Good read.

  • Amy Dunn
    2019-05-15 00:45

    I actually wanted to rate it 3 1/2 stars. I LOVED the start and the middle, however by the end of the book I was struggling to keep reading. I think his life was so genuinely amazing at the height of his ministry that everything after that seemed a little dull in comparison. I did learn a lot though and I would recommend it to others.

  • Adam
    2019-05-07 04:27

    A brief, at times truncated, flyover of the major points and relationships during Billy Graham's life. The writing felt a little trite at times, but gave a skeletal outline and understanding of the life of "America's Pastor."