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Tour De Liberty

Truth Talk / Stu Epperson
The Truth Network Radio
July 14, 2023 7:00 pm

Tour De Liberty

Truth Talk / Stu Epperson

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July 14, 2023 7:00 pm

 Stu interviews Terry Falwell. Listen as he shares some great stories and history of Liberty University.

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This is Rodney from the Masculine Journey Podcast, where we explored manhood within Jesus Christ. Your chosen Truth Network Podcast is starting in just a few seconds.

Sit back, enjoy it, share it, but most of all, thank you for listening and choosing the Truth Podcast Network. I didn't say Jerry Falwell. He's the founder of Liberty University, but he has a cousin. And you guys set the record for the IQ earlier on in school, didn't you, Terry? Yeah, Dr. Falwell, Jerry and I both went to Lynchburg College back in the day, and I think he had the highest IQ grade point average going in, and I had the lowest. But it's two records, so I'm real proud that we had two records at Lynchburg College.

Well, and this is an honor for you. I've got my nieces and nephews and just some wonderful young people here. And when Dr. Dwayne Carson, who started this great ministry called Date the Word, he was the head of spiritual life here for many years. And he said, Stu, if you take young people up to look at Liberty, we visit a lot of Christian colleges, and so many good Christian colleges.

And when I say Christian, I mean big C Christian that really love the Lord and really teach Scriptures through all that they do. Well, this is one of them, and Dr. Carson said, if you're going to go look at Liberty, you got to get a tour with a legendary, Terry Falwell. You've been doing this how long? Oh, since the school started. I've missed two home football games in the history of Liberty.

My wife says I haven't missed any basketball, baseball, softball, but I've been married 52 years this month, so I do my honey-do list before coming over here. Unbelievable. And they just marked the 50-year, I guess, anniversary of the school, which was somewhere back in 1970, right where it started.

71. We started off campus here, just didn't have any money, and we built here, you've been touring, in 77. So we've been blessed with over 150,000 students now. So many people hear about Christian colleges, they hear about the experience, but until you actually tour it, and a lot of parents come in, and you've been so gracious with our crowd, folks don't even know that you're a Falwell.

You just take them through, but some big names come, you've taken a lot of, some of the names that have sent their kids here over the years, you've taken them on tours. It's just amazing, I feel like just treat everybody, like you treat your friends, just go ahead and be yourself and show them around, and I tell people, if I don't get in the way, Liberty's going to show itself, it'll show it. And we've just been blessed, over 7,000 acres, and we're real close to Smith Mountain Lake, man-made lake, 500 miles around, so we've got so much to be thankful for at this university. Well, we kind of capped our trip off, because one of my nephews loves football, and he's looking at this amazing football field, state-of-the-art stadium, look at the giant jumbotron.

In the background, we've got the, to create the picture for us, Terry Falwell, you're the tour guide, not me, tell us where we are, show us around. I'm just a self-appointed expert, Jerry used to call me the Walmart greeter, but underneath that LU monogram, we have 55 miles of running trails and biking trails, and we have intramural fields, indoor track, natatorium, I guess that's a big word for Olympic-sized swimming pool, but we own over 7,000 acres, and it's big, but we have buses going around, but if a bus won't carry you where you want to, ODR, Own Demand Ride, will go wherever you want it to on campus, 7,000 acres. And this football field is fairly new, but every major sports program is here, and like, literally, we can look over there, and we see Thomas Road Baptist Church, a church that was founded by your cousin for the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and now it's really a part of the spiritual life here, even though they're different, you know, separate entities, it's right there. Yes, when he got started, he knocked on 100 doors a day, and he wouldn't count them unless they talked to him, and it grew from 35 members to over 20,000.

It was just an unbelievable story. He started this with no money, and 154 students, and next thing you know, we have well over 130,000 online, and 15,000 on campus, so we've got so much, and Jerry felt like meeting, starting a university to have a good sports program and a music, so we've beaten, what, Baylor, Baylor, Arkansas, and Arkansas, Virginia Tech, Virginia Tech has football, Brigham Young this past year, so we believe in, and we haven't stopped yet. I'm on the campus of Liberty University, and I'm sitting next to Terry Falwell, cousin to Jerry Falwell, who's in heaven, and who really was the founding visionary behind this, but what are some interesting fun facts that kind of, you get a lot of a-ha moments. I mean, you took us through the scripturium down there, amazing Bible museum in that giant tower, the tallest building, I didn't know that, tallest building in Lynchburg, but what are some of the fun facts that people hear that are like, wow, I had no idea?

Yeah, they just can't get over, you know, heard, you know, Dr. Falwell started a little school, and they get here on campus, they just can't believe it, but if Dr. Falwell came back now, I know what he would do, he would point that finger right in my face and say, I told you so. He really, and when things weren't going good here financially, he said, just keep praying, one day, we're going to be okay, and just mark it down, and God bless, and we see it now. And a ton of real estate's part of the school, you've got this amazing snow experience up there on the mountain, the dormitory's being built, what's that snow thing about? Yeah, it's snow flex, and artificial snow that stays wet year-round, and it's just unbelievable ski lodge, and we have a six-acre lake, we make it into a 31-acre, a little bit past that. We have a shooting range, any kind of gun you want to shoot, I tell people, if you don't like guns, we got bow and arrows on archery, you don't like that.

We have horses, indoor riding ring, outdoor riding ring, we have an ice arena, you just have to come here to experience it. I'm looking at the Blue Ridge Mountains, the panoramic view up here, there's the football field we're looking at. We've got a great perch here, like in the top of the tower, and I'm with Terry Falwell. Terry, behind all the wonderful perks, I mean, absolutely beautiful campus, all kinds of eating options, Chick-fil-A, you mentioned Slim Chicken, all these things, but the Lord Jesus Christ, this idea of building people up, so many missionaries, pastors, leaders, civic leaders, who are bright lights for Christ, are all over the world because of this school. Talk about the importance of that mission, especially near and dear to your cousin Jerry Falwell's heart. As Dr. Falwell said, some of my best graduates I gave second chances to, and he used to say, you know, every time I fell down, he said, I got back up, I never quit. So he gave people second chances, and he just helped so many, and it was just an unbelievable story, what we hear, and I'm seeing the third generation, that they came here back in the 70s when we didn't have anything, financing or building, but they knew what we stood for spiritually, and they want their grandchildren to go here.

So we see that day in and day out. A school that still believes the Bible, I mean, you know, you're paying someone, parent, you're paying someone to teach your kid. You're not paying your kid to go teach them, to change them, you're paying them to change you, and so why not the best, and why not, and this is really, there's an excellence here, I think, that you're trying to, you know, Christian colleges are, I really believe, are stepping their game up, and Liberty University is right there with the best of them. And I have a great video I show our visitors, I never get tired of watching it, about Dr. Falwell saying, somebody might see this video 50 years from now, and if it ever becomes liberal, burn it to the ground. I'd rather see it burnt to the ground than be a liberal school, and he really meant it, we believe it, and we're going to continue his vision, and can't say enough about this university.

Wow. So this is Liberty University, where I am brought to you by now, Terry Falwell, and it's interesting, we had a nice moment there at the beginning, you were very gracious to show us the book about Jerry Falwell, his, you know, kind of biography about his story, and my daughter Joy, whose great granddad, she read the caption, I think it's about page 179 or something in there, she read the part where Jerry Falwell talked about meeting Mr. Everson, Harry Everson, my granddad, and he put him on the radio, WBRG, back in the late 50s, and that was the real start for Thomas Road Baptist Church, and they're getting out in this area, and that was where they're starting. Families like this really helped us, and we never want to forget about families like that, they helped us. Well, it was a blessing, but that's what we do, you know, the Truth Network, my dad and my uncle, Salem Media, obviously my granddad, and now my cousin Brent is running WBRG, still on the air, AM 1050 and 94.1 FM across Lynchburg, and then we've got 93.7, a great affiliate of Truth Hawk right up here, the tower, we're looking at the tower, look over there, right, where's Candler's Mountain, now point that out.

Right up here, right up there, Candler's Mountain, and that's what we own, 7,000 acres, so we've got plenty of room to build, and we've got a great president started July the 1st, Dante Costin, President Costin, and we're real fortunate to have him. His resume looks a little bit better than mine, five masters, two doctorates, and he's unbelievable. And he loves Jesus, I mean, a college president who's a true Acomedician, but loves the Lord, committed to excellence, and so whatever Christian school you're going to, look for those things, right Terry?

You've got to look beyond the surface into the depth of things, right? And come and visit us, we have college for the weekend, we give tours almost every day, two a day, and we just want you to see what you're getting into here, and I think you could go online and pull, but it's nothing like coming to visit us. Wow, now you've been with, connected to the university as a Falwell, I mean, you're cousins to Jerry, the founder, how long have you been connected to the school, and how long have you been doing these tours? I've been doing the tours for about 30 years, but I really feel like I've been here since it started, like just missing two home football games, I just believe in what the mission is here, you can be a Christian and play football in any sport you want to play, and you can share your faith with your teammates and your opponents. And how many steps do you get a day?

I try to get 15,000. How many tours have you done? I can't keep up with those, but I'm just 75, so I want to keep going. We can't even keep up with this guy, and then he says, hey, you walk those two halls, I'm going to sprint out and get the car, he goes down five flights of steps, pulls the Suburban around to the other side, it's a massive campus, and I can actually say now that I've walked maybe a mile or more in Terry Falwell's shoes, because we did a shoe swap, because we want to try each other's shoes out, size 13, right?

Yeah, but after you do 15,000 steps a day, you need a few different kind of pair. But what drives you every step, your ultimate passion is what, Terry Falwell, as we get out of here? Yeah, just to show young people you can come to a Christian school, have fun, do it the right way, and I can't imagine what Dr. Falwell and so many others went through.

We went through a financial bad time. A lot of people didn't think we were going to make it, but Jerry kept saying, keep praying, keep praying, and now we've just been blessed. And the fruit of that is seen all over the world, and the gospel ministry is going out. Thank you so much for touring us around and taking some time with us on this beautiful summer day, and the children have had a great time, and thank you on behalf of all of the people, all the grandkids and the kids and generations that you've taken that are now grown up and whatnot, and now they're bringing their grandkids back. Thank you for doing all of it. I love it more than the people I give tours to. It's my pleasure always to give a tour of Liberty University. I'll post this on my page, and then the children are all acting up. I'll post a picture of us standing around on our page for people to see, and we'll make a podcast that will spread this around and encourage some folks. Thank you, sir. Thank you for all of what your family has done for Liberty University.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-07-14 20:37:07 / 2023-07-14 20:42:58 / 6

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