President's Viewpoint

Message from the President – Spring 2022

By Jerry Prevo, April 20, 2022

Our 50th Anniversary celebration continues on Liberty Mountain, and I am amazed daily by the work God is doing here in the lives of our students. They are excelling in so many areas, and the world is taking notice.

We recently held one of our largest career fairs on campus. Employers are signing up early to participate in these events, actively seeking out our students for not only their talent but also their work ethic and exemplary character that is needed on their workforce. They tell us they see something different in our students — they see integrity, compassion, and a drive to succeed that’s hard to find elsewhere.

But we know the reason our students are different. They are being trained in their field of study here, but they are also being taught how to live out their faith. From their professors to our Convocation speakers, Campus Community services, and the spiritual leadership teams in their halls, our students are learning to love others as Christ first loved us.

I’m extremely proud of how our students care for one another. This has been very evident this semester as they embraced the Liberty in Prayer initiative. Students have been picking up prayer request cards from special boxes around campus and stopping during their busy schedules to pray for their classmates and members of the Liberty community.

This is the foundation that makes all the difference.

When Liberty University was originally founded by Dr. Jerry Falwell in 1971 as Lynchburg Baptist College, its motto was “Knowledge Aflame.” That motto still exists today; a flame is embossed on the university seal. Fire is often used as a test of strength. As fire refines precious metals, so does the Word of God.

No confessing Christian institution can ever fulfill its mission or purpose apart from God’s Word. That’s because we cannot have true knowledge without the knowledge of God.

Our nation’s oldest elite universities  —  Harvard, Yale, and Princeton — were once firmly grounded in the Christian faith. Over time, each one of them abandoned the sacred Scriptures, along with their Christian mission.

When I was interviewed by Decision magazine for their cover story, “Christian Colleges Standing Strong for Christ,” I told them that Liberty maintains our uncompromising commitment to biblical values, even as the culture steadily becomes more antagonistic toward Christianity, by first teaching our students that the Bible is the inspired Word of God. And therefore, we as Christians are to follow its teachings  — without compromising. We continually remind students that Jesus taught if we follow Him, we will face the displeasure of the world (Matthew 10:22). The Bible, over and over again, says we are to expect the world to be antagonistic toward us (1 John 3:13), but as believers, we are not to compromise just to be liked by the world.

Liberty is not bending. God’s Word IS our source of truth. It permeates every classroom.

As we celebrate 50 Years of Training Champions for Christ, the focus isn’t on our growth in numbers or buildings — although God has certainly chosen to bless us. Our focus is on the legacy of our graduates and the influence they’ve had on this world as champions “standing strong” and carrying out the mission. That’s why we are breaking ground on the new Jerry Falwell Center — not just as a legacy to our founder, but to reinforce those foundations.

At Liberty, we teach our students to be Champions for Christ in the classroom so that they can be Champions for Christ in the world beyond. And by God’s grace they are leading faithfully.

— Jerry Prevo, President

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