Larry Bird and Donald Trump

Donald J. Trump is to politics what Larry Bird was to basketball.

When Bird played at my Alma Mater, he was regarded at the greatest white guy to ever play the game, his teammates were average in skills but good team players.

Bird was the master of the pivot. The key to pivoting is to keep one foot stationary and on the ground while staying on the move with the other foot in preparing to pass the ball or take a shot against the defender. The opposing team was geared to defend against Larry. There would often be more than one player defending against the Bird. Everything revolved around Larry either taking the shot or passing the ball to a teammate, who had an open shot, because all the defenders were drawn to Larry.

Larry had the skills to make his average teammates look better than they actually were, even great at times. He had the keen eye to always see the opening to shoot or to pass the ball (often while looking in another direction) to a teammate for an easy bucket.

The key for a great player is to stay on the move; he does not remain stationary, flat footed, or lean back on his heels. The ploy is to fake the defender, often several times, before passing or shooting. Good players have one dominant foot off which they pivot. Larry was a double threat, because he could skillfully pivot off either foot, making it extremely difficult to defend against him.

A number of conservative commentators including Laura Ingraham and Ann Coulter are concerned over the “compromising comments” made by the President at the televised bi-partisan meeting concerning comprehensive immigration reform.

From the beginning, I noticed a pattern in Trump’s playing the game of politics, especially during the primaries and general election. He would make statements that indicated a softening of some of his hardline positions only to come back within a week or so standing as firm at ever if not stronger than before.

Republicans were concerned that he would get his pivot foot off the ground, that is travel in basketball terms. The ground symbolizes Trump’s basic message. His foes thought they had thrown him off message. Neither Republicans or Democrats or the media knew when he was faking. He had phenomenal success in outmaneuvering everyone with his many fakes, then sinking his jump shot, usually for a three pointer. With so many unpredictable moves Trump’s opponents would become exhausted. He was faster than any of them.

Remember, the President is often speaking strategically (faking), which is part of the art of the deal. Watch the Trumpster as he sinks a three pointer in any upcoming immigration deal, like he did with the tax cut.

Now you know why Coach Bobby Knight liked Trump so well and encouraged him to run before he even announced his candidacy for the presidency. Knight, who scouted the some of the greatest that ever-played college basketball, knew a winner when he saw him. Much of coaching is successful recruiting.

Knight was a factor in recruiting Trump to get in the political arena. Knight missed out with Larry Bird, losing him to Indiana State. But he backed the right man for the Presidency. There has never been any player who dominated the game like Bird; in my life-time there has never been a President who has been as dominate as Trump.

Ronald and Donald

Ronald Reagan was the first divorced president. Donald Trump is the second; he is twice divorced.

Reagan’s oldest daughter, Maureen, from his marriage to Jane Wyman, was most like her father in having his sunny disposition. There was another daughter, Christine, who only lived one day. His eldest son, Michael, who Ronald and Jane adopted, is the one closest to him in political philosophy and is a conservative talk show host. He did not support the candidacy of Trump. Patti and Ronald, Jr. are the offspring of Ronald and Nancy. Patti for years was a druggie and posed for Playboy; she did somewhat redeem herself in that she drew close to her father during his Alzheimer years and wrote fondly of him. Ron is an atheist and liberal political commentator.

Donald Trump is building a dynasty, which should carry the Trump brand far into the future. Ronald Reagan left behind no biological grandchildren, although his adopted son, Michael, fathered two children, hopefully Ronald’s grandson, Cameron, will honor the Reagan name. Maureen, adopted a daughter from Uganda. Reagan’s only brother, Neil didn’t have any children. Donald Trump has eight grandchildren with more likely to come, including Donald Trump III. Eleven-year-old Barron has already become a controversial celebrity, who likes to dress like his father.

Trump has done a marvelous job in raising successful children, who are devoted to his cause and actively campaigned for his presidency. Trump has dealt impressively with the difficulties of “the blended family.” His example should be an encouragement to so many families in this generation, who are dealing with this type of family situation.

Trump had three basic rules for his children, no tobacco, no drugs and no alcohol; later he added another rule, no tattoos. Evidently, his children have honored him in these areas. Trump has been more successful as a family man than Reagan, although a father can do the right things and still have rebellious children. God, himself, being a prime example. Reagan’s children accused their parents of being so into their devotion to one another, that the children felt neglected.

The fact the Donald was not faithful to his wives is a black mark against him, although he has straightened out in his old age. As a father, adultery and divorce are setting a bad example. Usually, children are scared by unfaithfulness to marriage vows; this does not seem to be a problem with Trump’s children, who must have at least had the insight to choose wives with good parenting abilities.

The old standard that the proof is in the pudding; or as Jesus put it, “Wisdom is justified of all her children,” gives a significant edge to Trump as a family man over Reagan.

Score: Trump gets an 8 and Reagan receives a 5 as fathers in Brother Jed’s evaluation.

What is the difference between Poland and Germany?

 

In 1979 when Poland was still under the domination of the Communist, Pope John Paul II returns to Poland to offers a communion to the people of Warsaw, who cried, “We want God!” God answered their prayer and the Communist regime quickly tumbled. Our good President Trump told the story in his speech.

Germany effectively rejected the Bible with the higher criticism, which was centered in 19th Century Germany. They were crushed in WWI. Then they got Hitler and the National Socialist Workers Party and defeated again in WWII. They are big losers.

Germany never repented after WWII; they are still essentially socialist without the racial anti-Jewish overtones. Germans still don’t want God, the Bible or Jesus Christ. They don’t even want Martin Luther. Now they have Merkel, and hordes of Muslims and rioting in the streets. Poland has peace and is becoming prosperous and wants to be great again. They are smart enough not to open their borders to the barbarian Muslims.

Germany has largely rejected the historical values of Western Civilization, which Trump outlined in his speech. Poland was liberated with the help of the Pope, the Prime Minister (Thatcher) and the President (Reagan). Poland boards the Trump train. Will Merkel, the Russian or the French leader want to ride with Trump? I do not anticipate that they will for they do not have a heart for God, like the Lionheart and the Polish people.

Americans need to cry in our streets, “We want God!” We have a champion in the White House.

Trump

It is almost to the day two years ago, when Mr. and Mrs. Donald J. Trump walked down the escalator of the Trump Tower. At that time, few people thought that he would become the 45th president of the United States. But the anointing of God was upon the man.

After Saul was rejected by God as King of Israel, the Lord sent the prophet Samuel to anoint one of Jesse’s sons as king. As Jesse presented seven of his sons, God showed Samuel that none of these were his choice. Finally, Jesse reluctantly presented his youngest son, David, who was a ruddy and handsome, but merely a shepherd boy. And Jehovah said to Samuel, “Arise and anoint him for he is the one.”

The prophets in the Bible like Samuel often had access to kings. In my time, the two men of God who had the most access to presidents were Billy Graham and Jerry Falwell. Of the two prophets, Falwell was the most political; he was the founder of the Moral Majority. Falwell was the man most responsible for politically activating Evangelicals and making them a strong enough force to elect Ronald Reagan president.

Jerry Falwell, Jr., President of Liberty University, founded by his father, stepped into the prophetic role of his deceased father by anointing Donald J. Trump as God’s man to become the 45th president. When he did so, Falwell compared Trump’s leadership abilities to Winston Churchill’s.

I doubt if before Trump’s announcement as a candidate, if he ever entered Falwell’s mind as a potential president. Falwell in endorsing Trump chose him over 16 more experience politicians who had greater political recognition. He chose Trump even over the one who seemingly had the greatest stature, Jeb Bush.

Jesse’s son, Eliab, first came before Samuel, who thought, “Surely, the Lord’s anointed is before me.”

But the LORD said unto Samuel, “Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD sees not as man sees; for man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.”

Apparently, God refused the establishment candidate, Bush and the even the upstart from Texas, Ted Cruz, who was another evangelical favorite and choice of some would be prophets, none of whom had the stature of Falwell.

From the day that Falwell chose Trump over all the Republican sons and one daughter, the Spirit of the Lord was upon the Donald and he won the Republican nomination and the general election for President. After being offered the cabinet position of Secretary of Education, Falwell determined to stay at his position as chancellor of the greatest university in the world.

We learn from the Bible that God surprises us again and again by the instruments he chooses to accomplish his will. He chose the little nation of Israel, the reluctant Moses, the shepherd boy, the young virgin Mary, the uneducated fishermen, the hated tax collector Matthew, the persecutor Saul of Tarsus. God gives his power to the least likely of people and through them changes men, nations and the world.

The Four Questions

 

What is the origin of life?

What is the meaning of life?

What is the source of morality?

What is our destiny?

 Daily on campus we tell the students that any religion or philosophy has to answer the questions of origin, meaning, morals and destiny. At Indiana University recently, an atheist asked, “Who are you to say that a belief system has to answer these questions?”

I answered, “These are questions that all thinking men ask. That is why a moment ago you asked me about evolution. You want to know how it all started. Everyone asks, “What does that mean?” Or when you say something is meaningless, you are assuming something else in meaningful. Children very soon start asking, “Why?” They intuitively know there must be an answer. Often times they can ask some difficult questions. We have all said that an action is good or an-other action is bad, or someone is good or someone else is evil. What is your standard of judging actions and judging people? We all do it and we all have a standard. There is not a person here who has not wondered what happens after death. Christianity offers the most reasonable and coherent answers to these four basic questions of life.”

One fellow who was responding positively to my teaching asked, “How can you say that because Christianity has the highest ethical code that it is necessarily the right code?” I answered, “Should we not accept the system that promotes the highest good over the lesser good? Should we not choose the best over the better? Should we not believe the system that offers the most freedom and which best promotes the physical and mental health of mankind?”

When I demonstrated that God’s existence is necessary, just as a building requires a builder, a painting requires a painter, a sculpture requires a sculptor, etc., a girl asked, “How do we know that the creator is the God of the Bible?”

I answered, “Not only does creation testify to a creator but to a loving creator who has supplied everything we need in order for us to be happy. None of the gods of other religions so loves that he takes upon himself  human flesh and is willing to suffer at the hands of his creation. Our God loved so much that he came to serve his creation, not to be served. And he gave his life as a ransom.” Christianity is unique in that two millenniums ago when the nations were still sacrificing men unto their pagan gods, the true and living God became a man and sacrificed Himself unto men.

Bro. Jed

Happy Birthday, Mr. President

 

On your birthday, I think of Charlemagne (Charles the Great) (742-814), King of the Franks, who was crowned Holy Roman Emperor by the Pope in 800 AD.

Charlemagne made Western Europe great again by reuniting Western Europe and reviving education and culture after the Western Empire had fallen three hundred years earlier. By the sword and the cross, Charlemagne became the father of Europe and the great defender of the Christian religion and the Western Church. Like his grandfather, Charles the Hammer Martel, Charlemagne is credited with saving Europe from the Saracens.

The story of President Donald J. Trump has yet to be told. Christians pray that you will fulfil your destiny to make America great again and to protect the Church from the pagans from within (the Democrats and their cohorts) and without (the Muslim hordes). May your success and greatness even surpass that of Charlemagne as you act according to God’s will.

How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts!

   Terre Haute’s historic downtown houses of worship sponsored a Stained-Glass Sunday Afternoon, which I toured today. I am a member in one of these churches, which has spectacular windows including one behind the altar, which I have meditated on virtually all of my life, that depicts Jesus’ Resurrection flanked by Peter and John.
   Most of these churches were built in the early 20th Century and feature Gothic Revival architecture. So much of our faith can be revealed through architecture and especially the stained glass, which relates Biblical history, particularly the life of Christ. Before the invention of the printing press in the late 15th Century stained glass was crucial in conveying the message of the crucifixion and resurrection of our Savior.
   Many, who have lived in Terre Haute for all your lives, have never been inside these lovely places of worship. Now you will have to wait until next year’s tour. Or better yet, if you don’t have a church home, visit a historical church on Sunday morning, wherever you live. Or if you don’t care so much for history, all the churches have a certain beauty, which is the Spirit of Christ dwelling in the soul’s of the congregation. One doesn’t have to have the stained glass.
   Sometimes, I feel like I am a prisoner of history. I have a master’s degree in U.S. history, I taught the subject for over five years; I own a home built in 1925 in the historical district of Terre Haute and there are so many aspects of our modern culture to which I cannot relate. Most of the hymns I enjoy singing are over hundred years old. I read few modern authors.

All’s Well That Ends Well.

I was listening on the radio to the local news from Ventura, CA. The biggest story was the rescue of a cat and dog from a fire. The rest of the news was also inconsequential.

I got to thinking how the vast majority of Americans go about their daily activities peacefully and busily but without major crisis, unless there is a death in the family.

Then the national news came on, which anxiously speaks of a nation in crisis. The new mantra is “breaking news,” which is intended to take our breath away. Each day has become “a busy news day.”

   I don’t suppose most Americans watch network or cable news. They don’t care about the alleged Russian and Trump election connection, nor any other issue on the National News. They might tune to get a report on the latest terrorist attack but within 10 minutes it all gets repetitive. And anyway, it happened far away from you and me.

Life goes on folks. Be thankful that you are living a quiet and peaceful life with family and friends in your hometown. But don’t neglect the real question, “Where will you spend eternity?” This life will soon be over even for those of us that are most healthy and vigorous.

Put your faith in Christ and all will work out well at the finish. Make the church of your choice the center of your spiritual and social life for the sake of the Lord and your family. In church you will meet the best people who can be your friends for life. And remember, all’s well that ends well.

JOIN BROTHER JED LIVE!!!

This Summer, Brother Jed will be starting a teaching series on the Book of Acts.   It will be held live Every Tuesday at 7am, Starting on June 6th.  Don’t Miss it!

“Trump is General George C. Patton”

I can understand why conservatives like Jonah Goldberg, David French and Bill Kristol remain anti-Trump. They are the literati. Trump in their mind is a hardly literate buffoon.

Jonah Goldberg is General Omar Bradley. Trump is General George C. Patton. Goldberg and Bradley are colorless, polite, courteous, reticent, gentle, dull, dependable, and respect the chain of command. Trump and Patton are colorful, cussing, outspoken, impulsive, independent, flamboyant, glory-seeking and victorious.

   Bradley and Patton were polar opposites personality wise and it is widely known that Bradley did not like Patton either personally or professionally. While Bradley was concerned about gaining a good press, Patton did not trust the press. Patton slapped the cowardly soldier; Bradley reprimanded Patton for doing so.

It took Patton, not comparatively low-energy Bradley, to win the presidency and to be victorious over two political dynasties, Bushes and Clinton’s. Trump was the street fighter, willing to get down and dirty with Hillary.

No other Republican could have carried Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania but Trump. Bill Kristol encouraged the genteel David French to run on a Conservative Party ticket against Trump and Hillary. Such a campaign would have gotten nowhere.

The National Review represented by Goldberg and French has been the primary magazine influencing conservatism since the mid-fifties. The Weekly Standard published by Kristol has been in thick of the battle for neo-conservatism since the mid-nineties.

These literati were battling while Trump was building a crass business empire, entertaining millions with a TV show and often supporting liberal causes. They must see Trump as an upstart and Johnny come lately to the conservative cause. Trump is philosophically more of a pragmatist than a conservative. Yet, he may end up doing more for conservatism than Ronald Reagan.

Brietbart News flashed on the scene in 2007 and eventually supplanted the National Review and Weekly Standard as the loudest voices on the right. Upon the death of Brietbart in 2012, Steve Bannon took over the Brietbart website and last year Bannon became instrumental in Trump’s victory.

Now Steve Bannon is chief strategist in the Trump administration! The National Review and The Weekly Standard no longer have the influence these publications once had. The literati are polar opposites tactically compared to Bannon and Trump. The literati operate as critics of our culture. Trump is a leader determined to Make America Great Again.