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Impacting the World for Christ Through Business

Truth Talk / Stu Epperson
The Truth Network Radio
February 4, 2022 5:00 am

Impacting the World for Christ Through Business

Truth Talk / Stu Epperson

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February 4, 2022 5:00 am

Stu interviews Dr. David Brat, Dean of Liberty University School of Business and an entrepreneur and theologian who loves Jesus.

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Share it. But most of all, thank you for listening to the Truth Podcast Network. This is the Truth Network. He's an entrepreneur. He's a theologian. He loves Jesus and he is not afraid to engage in public policy, to speak the truth and love in the public spectrum, even in politics. He is Dr. David Bratt.

He's the Dean of the School of Business at Liberty University and a friend of mine for many years. Dr. Bratt, good to see you and good to be in your office here. Wow. Dr. Stu, glad to have you anytime. You're a force of nature. It's good to have that much energy coming up and down the stairway. Well, thank you.

Well, I'm looking at a force of nature right here. I'm looking at the Blue Ridge Mountains. You got an office here. You're looking at this beautiful campus. There's the Liberty Tower. Tell us where we are. Tell us what's significant about what happens in this building in particular and then on the greater level on this campus.

Yep. Well, unfortunately, I hate to tell you, in my experience, this is one of the few bastions and universities of higher thought that's still engaged in both the life of the mind and take seriously the Judeo Christian tradition and the Christian faith. And it's very unfortunate. I could name names of my brothers and sisters at other schools, and they're just fading largely due to the almighty dollar that appears to rule everything. But what happens in this place is we train our students in the faith first. God's the first principle. And then after that, I'm teaching economics right now.

I just taught for an hour. And there's no God of the gaps at Liberty. I said, explain to me how anything you want in Western Civ is related to economics and the Judeo Christian tradition. And I said, by the way, everything that is Western Civ has been dictated by the Christian tradition.

So it's not like there's some gaps that Christianity explains. We explain the whole picture. The Judeo Christian tradition, along with the Greeks, you put those two together, for 2,000 years we've had a good run, and now the Marxists are giving us a run. And so it's time to fight in a loving way.

It's time to wake up in a woke culture. Dr. Bratt, can you talk about how somewhere down there along the line, believers were Renaissance men like you. They were leaders in science. They were leaders in mathematics. Louise Pascal, leaders in business.

But somehow we've relegated that. And then the education system has gone socialist, communist. It's really evil, and they're kind of almost propaganda brainstorming our kids the wrong way. Not here at Liberty, but talk about that great divorce that's happened and how you're trying to bring that back, how important it is that parents really think and frame where they send their kids to be trained. Well, my mind is always economics, and I just got done talking about it. But roughly speaking, I think it happened when God blessed us with incredible wealth, which I love, right? And so 1776, it's a hockey stick. The world history is poor, subsistence, living agriculture for the whole world, every country in the world.

And 1800, boom, straight up to the roof. And now we've become rich, and individualism has taken over, right? And so you look at like the biblical principles. God wants us to individually work hard. I think God wants a decentralized government to separate the powers, etc. So all of those moves were great, and we're biblically driven. But now, I think we're leaving God in the rearview mirror as a culture. And now it's all about me, me, me, and in economics, my utility, my happiness, right? And that's not the biblical thing. There's nothing wrong with you being happy, but when you wake up in the morning, you should be looking upstairs at God, and then you should be looking at your neighbor, because that's command one and two.

And so it's straightforward. God's blessed us with every riches you could imagine, but we're not using it for the kingdom. And you're trying to equip young men and women and women of God here at Liberty in your school of business to literally go out and be arrows of righteousness, to lead people to Jesus through commerce. You're pouring into these African leaders. You've got a big event coming up, a big global summit. You're doing that kind of thing. Talk about that, how God's word, the gospel, will spread through commerce, marketplace. I think it was Franklin Graham said, one of the greatest mission fields in the world in the current times, and the future, is the marketplace. Yeah.

Well, everybody abstracts, right? Our Trinity's off, I think, in my view. Our Christology's off. Jesus had a unique ministry.

None of us are called to that, to his life. And we forget he was a carpenter for the first 30 years. The Jews are just incredibly powerful witnesses to their significance in the business community, the Nobel Prizes in economics that relate to economics in our life down here on the earth where God put us. Milton Friedman's one of my favorite, right? Nobel Prize economics, best economist probably the last hundred years.

And so, yeah, we're called to do our work in our professions, in our calling minds economics, but we're calling people from all over the world. We had a few billionaires from Nigeria with us. One of them's the biggest BMW dealer in Nigeria. Well, these are billionaires I get emails from all the time saying that, or these are the real billionaires. No, these are real guys. No, they're real Christian guys.

And he said to us, he said, I've been to Harvard, I've been to Stanford, I've never seen anything like this. He said, this is the only place the egos are in check. Everyone's looking out for someone else other than themselves.

Not everybody's just selling. Everyone's trying to build up the kingdom together. And it was fun.

All these CEOs were like in shock because they're sharing the faith, they're tapping each other on the shoulder, hitting each other, you know, just having fun. And I'd never been to a summit like this. And I never designed one like that. God took that thing over, right?

I had no idea. I was just bringing great positive Christians together and they know what to do. You put smart people in a room, they'll figure it out. And they figured it out. And so that we're going to do it again.

And everybody's coming back. They all said, I can't wait. What's the best website for folks to learn more about these global summits and also what you're doing here at the School of Business at Liberty? Yep.

The website, save the date. Next CEO Summit is for October 5 to 7. And then if you got CEOs or pastors with the CEO, you want to come together as a joint ticket. That's a nice way to do it. Just email me dabratt at liberty.edu.

And that's the voice of Dean Bratt, Dr. David Bratt, who is the Dean of the School of Business, which by the way, this is an impressive building here in Lynchburg on the campus of Liberty University, a beautiful campus. But it's neat to see there's a kingdom component to this. Now, what's creeping into our schools and sadly into our churches is this communist invasion, which is an anti-God, an atheistic worldview. You alluded to Marxism earlier. Can you talk about the damages?

I mean, what was it? 25 years ago, Venezuela is the fourth wealthiest country in the world. Today, 96% of Venezuelans are below the poverty level.

Kids are starving to death there. And the person that destroyed that country, Hugo Chávez, is basically in control of America. I mean, his people that worship the sand, the ground he walks on, our leadership currently in America, they're all into him.

And is that where they want to take our country? And what does a Christian do? Yeah, well, I'm glad you threw in the Marxist piece first because the modern mind, most Christians have a decent positive disposition. They want to believe that human nature is basically good, even though it's not, right? And so just get your basics straight there, right?

It's not. And so it's not about personalities like Venezuela or whatever. Marxism, right, as a philosophical system, rejects ideas, right? So Plato, the Republic, the greatest philosophical book, probably the Western tradition, he's pointing up at the realm of the forms just through reason alone and the ascent of the soul. And of course, Augustine, in our tradition, copied from Plato. And all the Western civ has shared that. Of course, ideas exist.

It's a search for truth and knowledge. And that led to the building of the greatest institutions you can imagine. It led to the constitution, which was written by James Madison, who went to Princeton Seminary, where I went. That's my bragging point.

I love that one, right? And then Adam Smith, just by Quentin, happens to be a Scot in the Enlightenment, the Scottish Reformation and Enlightenment in Scotland. And these things are not accidents. Marx is a reaction against them. God does not exist. Human rights do not exist. And ideas do not exist. And ethics does not exist. So Marx, the great Jewish prophet, railing that the rich are evil and the workers are morally good.

How do you make a claim for morally good when you don't have a morality? And we've let them off the hook entirely, right? The modern mind should say, no, you don't get to proceed another sentence until you make sense.

But we've gotten lazy and we're doing the me, me, me and shopping and I'm as guilty of it as anybody, right? We need to get back to first principles. And it's a spiritual war. We all know that. But it's a fight now.

You're not going to just wake up and be passive anymore. It's time to take action. And I know there are crony capitalists. I know there are greed-mongering capitalists that have done bad things, whether it's on Wall Street or political or corporate America. But there's also a biblical tone to capitalism. Believers in capitalism have done a whole lot of good for a lot of people, a la Chick-fil-A, a la Hobby Lobby, a la your teaching here at Liberty University.

Close us with a challenge to business owners, how to redeem the land, how to be a witness for Christ, salt and light in the workplace, in the marketplace. Yeah, well, all of human history is fallen. And so the left likes looking at our greedy capitalists, but they don't want to look at greedy communists.

And Xi Jinping right now is having the COVID games coming up and they have a breakout all over the place. And then the Soviet Union, no one wants to look at the greed there by the Russian oligarchs, etc. They only want to point the moral finger because you're shaking their hand at God and God's country.

Israel and the United States have always been the new Jerusalem. So the left is shaking their hand and using Marx's tools to take it down. And so my challenge to CEOs is to look above the bottom line, which they are not. The Fortune 500 leaders right now, unfortunately, they probably have been raised with the right principles, but they weren't raised with the stiff backbone. And history's going to judge them, God's going to judge them for their actions. And they're very powerful people that need to step up and do the right thing right now.

So that's the call. Yeah, well, so looking to the Lord, honoring God in your business, whether it's a small business, pastors speaking the truth and love, proclaiming the Word of God boldly, standing up against these evils in the land, not being afraid to tackle this and recognizing that what communism and socialism promises, it never delivers. And it ends up then, you know, they forced this moral agenda right down your throat.

And next thing you know, you're going to be in in jail for hate crimes, right? Yeah, no, it I just, I try to steer clear of the ideology, I just point toward the data. All the rich countries were originally in Western Europe, and they were all largely Protestant, France, Catholic France was the one exception. That's that's your history, right? That's where growth emerged. That's where living standards went up.

That's where life expectancy went up. Out of that, you got the US, that's where human rights language came from. That's where the World Bank came from. That's where we made friends with Hitler after World War Two, which is a Christian undertaking, I know no other country could imagine making friends with your archenemy, Germany and Japan. All of this is due to the Christian tradition, right?

And so I just look at our performance, right? And then women's emergence into the workforce, the end of slavery. Now we pay 15 grand for every kid in K to 12 education across the whole country. And so it's time to perform the resources are there.

Every kid now has access to the Word of God on a on their phone, and to every lecture on the planet. And every kid and this includes the middle and the rich, there's no excuses anymore. It's time to be an entrepreneur take over, excel, help others excel. And that's what capitalism is about. If you help others excel, you will do well.

Yeah, it's others first. It's serving, it's loving your neighbors yourself, putting others first. Dr. David Bratt, thanks for hanging out with us. One star to a senior kid has learned from guys like him at Godly Christian Colleges like Liberty. I'm up on the third floor business school. I have an open door policy.

If you're ever at Liberty campus, pop on up, say hi, Dave Bratt. Awesome. We got a couple of truth warriors here with us.

Let's get a quick selfie with the four of us. How's that? Bring these young kids with good. Future leaders, right? No, they're gonna. I can tell. That's good. This is the Truth Network.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-12 19:30:41 / 2023-06-12 19:36:45 / 6

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