The Rev. Franklin Graham has compared the blood and sacrifice needed for America to achieve its Independence Day to the sacrifice that Jesus Christ made on the cross, and called upon Americans to consider both on July 4th.
"It has been 240 years since America declared her independence—and it is something to celebrate! I'm thankful every day for all of the freedoms we enjoy in this country. These freedoms come to us at a great cost— blood has been shed, and sacrifices continue to be made, for our freedom as Americans," Graham wrote on his Facebook page.
"Blood was also shed so that we could have freedom from the bondage and punishment of sin — the blood of God's Son, Jesus Christ. He gave the ultimate sacrifice to rescue our souls. Have you trusted Jesus as your Savior and Lord? The Bible tells us, 'Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed' (John 8:36). Are you celebrating that freedom today?" he asked.
Graham, who is the president and CEO of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, has been touring the country this past year as part of his "Decision America" tour, calling on Christians to engage in politics and vote based on biblical principles.
His rally events have drawn tens of thousands across the U.S., and he has touched on the looming choice Americans will have to make in November's presidential election.
"You're just going to have to ask yourself which of the two [presumptive nominees] do you think we as Christians will at least have a voice with?" the evangelist asked last week on the Capitol grounds in Olympia, Washington.
"You have to make that choice," he said, repeating as he did many times that he has no faith in either the Republican or the Democratic party. "Now, you might have to hold your nose."
Graham's "Decision America" tour also stopped in Juneau, Alaska, on Friday, where the evangelist called on potential voters to "honor God with (their) vote."
"I'm not here to tell you who to vote for," Graham said, according to Morris News Service-Alaska/Juneau Empire. "I'm running a campaign for God."
Reflecting further on his lack of trust in the American two-party political system, he added:
"I have no hope in the Democratic Party — zero. But before you Republicans high-five each other, I have zero hope in the Republican Party, too."
Graham repeated at the Juneau event his call for Americans to go out and make their voices heard in the political process and the upcoming elections.
Earlier in June, Graham attended a closed-door meeting with over 900 pastors in New York and Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, though Graham later explained that his presence was not an endorsement of Trump.