Among the articles in the very first issue ofCHRISTIANITY TODAY, October 15, 1956, was one by evangelist Billy Graham. Here is a condensation of it:

No one who once heard Jesus could ever again be the same. What was the secret of this Master Teacher? How did he hold those crowds spellbound?

“And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one having authority” (Matt. 7:28, 29). Is not this authoritative note part of the secret of the earthly ministry of Christ?…

In 1949 I had been having a great many doubts concerning the Bible. I thought I saw apparent contradictions in Scripture. Some things I could not reconcile with my restricted concept of God. When I stood up to preach, the authoritative note so characteristic of all great preachers of the past was lacking. Like hundreds of other young seminary students, I was waging the intellectual battle of my life. The outcome could certainly affect my future ministry.

In August of that year I had been invited to Forest Home, a Presbyterian conference center high in the mountains outside Los Angeles. I remember walking down a trail, tramping into the woods, and almost wrestling with God. I dueled with my doubts, and my soul seemed to be caught in the crossfire. Finally, in desperation, I surrendered my will to the living God revealed in Scripture. I knelt before the open Bible and said: “Lord, many things in this Book I do not understand. But thou has said, ‘The just shall live by faith.’ All I have received from thee, I have taken by faith. Here and now, by faith, I accept the Bible as thy Word. I take it all. I take it without reservations. Where there are things I cannot understand, I will reserve judgment ...

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