Trump: ‘In America we don’t worship government, we worship God’
LYNCHBURG, Virginia, May 18, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – President Donald Trump Sunday extolled Americans’ belief in God and declared that “in America we don't worship government, we worship God,” in his first presidential commencement speech, at Liberty University.
“America is better when people put their faith into action,” Trump said. “As long as I am your president, no one is ever going to stop you from practicing your faith or from preaching what's in your heart.”
Trump was invited by Liberty’s president, Jerry Falwell, Jr., son of the late conservative TV evangelist whose support was critical to Ronald Reagan becoming president. Jerry Falwell, Jr. was a key early backer of then-candidate Trump and his support helped propel the New York businessman to victory.
The following are some key excerpts of Trump’s Liberty speech as provided by TIME magazine:
- “It's been a little over a year since I've spoken on your beautiful campus and so much has changed. Right here, the class of 2017 dressed in cap and gown, graduating to a totally brilliant future. And here I am standing before you as President of the United States, so I'm guessing — there are some people here today who thought that either one of those things, either one, would really require major help from God…"
- “[T]here is no place in the world I'd rather be to give my first commencement address as President than here with my wonderful friends at Liberty University. And I accepted this invitation a long time ago. I said to Jerry that I'd be there, and when I say something I mean it…."
- “Just think for a moment of how blessed you are to be here today at this great, great university, living in this amazing country, surrounded by people who you love and care about so much. Then ask yourself, with all of those blessings, and all of the blessings that you've been given, what will you give back to this country and, indeed, to the world? What imprint will you leave in the sands of history? What will future Americans say we did in our brief time right here on Earth? Did we take risks? Did we dare to defy expectations? Did we challenge accepted wisdom and take on established systems? I think I did, but we all did and we're all doing it."
- “Or did we just go along with convention, swim downstream, so easily with the current and just give in because it was the easy way, it was the traditional way or it was the accepted way? Remember this, nothing worth doing ever, ever, ever came easy. Following your convictions means you must be willing to face criticism from those who lack the same courage to do what is right — and they know what is right, but they don't have the courage or the guts or the stamina to take it and to do it. It's called the road less traveled."
- “I know that each of you will be a warrior for the truth, will be a warrior for our country, and for your family. I know that each of you will do what is right, not what is the easy way, and that you will be true to yourself, and your country, and your beliefs…."
- “America has always been the land of dreams because America is a nation of true believers. When the pilgrims landed at Plymouth they prayed. When the founders wrote the Declaration of Independence, they invoked our creator four times, because in America we don't worship government, we worship God. That is why our elected officials put their hands on the Bible and say, 'So help me God,' as they take the oath of office. It is why our currency proudly declares, 'In God we trust,' and it's why we proudly proclaim that we are one nation under God every time we say the pledge of allegiance."
- [Liberty University founder Jerry Falwell, Sr.’s] “vision was of a world class university for evangelical Christians. And I want to thank you, because boy did you come out and vote, those of you that are old enough, in other words your parents. Boy oh boy, you voted, you voted.…"
- “Relish the opportunity to be an outsider. Embrace that label — being an outsider is fine, embrace the label — because it's the outsiders who change the world and who make a real and lasting difference.…"
- “Liberty University is a place where they really have true champions and you have a simple creed that you live by: To be, really, champions for Christ. Whether you're called to be a missionary overseas, to shepherd a church or to be a leader in your community, you are living witness of the gospel message of faith, hope and love. And I must tell you I am so proud as your president to have helped you along over the past short period of time…."
- “America is better when people put their faith into action. As long as I am your president, no one is ever going to stop you from practicing your faith or from preaching what's in your heart. We will always stand up for the right of all Americans to pray to God and to follow his teachings…."
- “What started as a dream with a few good friends he helped shepherd into the largest Christian university in the world. Just look at this amazing, soaring, growing campus and I've been watching it grow because I've been a friend of Liberty for a long time, now, Jerry. It's been a long time…"
- “We all bleed the same red blood of patriots. We all salute the same great American flag, and we are all made by the same almighty God. As long as you remember what you have learned here at Liberty, as long as you have pride in your beliefs, courage in your convictions and faith in your God, then you will not fail."
- “And as long as America remains true to its values, loyal to its citizens, and devoted to its Creator, then our best days are yet to come, I can promise you that.”
President Trump's full address:
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