Dear friends:

Truly intellectual giants come along only rarely.  William F. Buckley, Jr. was one of those rare giants. 

This past week the world lost this giant when, at age 82, he departed this earth for his heavenly home, where his intellect will be allowed to soar without limit and without the bonds and chains of mere three-dimensional earthly existence.  The reason I am confident that he is in heaven is because he publicly and unashamedly confessed his Redeemer, and Jesus said that if anyone confesses Him before men, He will confess them before His Father.

At age 25 Buckley wrote his first book, God and Man at Yale, which became a classic.  He wrote the book based on his undergraduate experiences at Yale University. In the book, he criticized Yale and its faculty for forcing liberal ideology on its students and trying to destroy students' religious beliefs.

That was in 1951.  Little did we know how prophetic that book was.  Now, a half century later, virtually the entire academic establishment, which boasts of a false objectivity, is ultra-liberal, anti-Christian, anti-religion, and are little more than propaganda factories, brainwashing millions of your people every year who come there thinking universities are bastions of truth, when in fact they are bastions of atheism and liberalism.

God and Man at Yale should be required reading for every new college student.

I will never forget Buckley's biblical response to a pessimistic interviewer years ago who asked him how can he be so optimistic in such a negative world.  Buckley simply replied, "I know my Redeemer liveth," quoting from Job 19:25.

Buckley is considered the founder of the modern conservative movement.  He was the founder of National Review magazine.  He was an author of numerous books, editor, columnist, novelist, debater, TV talk show star of "Firing Line," harpsichordist, and even a trans-oceanic sailor.  Buckley worked at a daunting pace, taking as little as 20 minutes to write a column for National Review.  He was truly a renaissance man.

Buckley's first language had been Spanish, having been raised by Mexican nannies, and he studied at the University of Mexico before being drafted into the Army in 1944. After being discharged in 1946, he worked briefly for the CIA. He then attended Yale University, graduating in 1950. Shortly thereafter, at the age of 25, he became a literary sensation with the publication of his book, God and Man at Yale.

Listening to him interview a TV guest was a marvel to behold.  With skill, grace and courtesy, he could slice and dice even the most brilliant and antagonistic guest.  One writer described the process thusly, "flexing his imposing vocabulary ever so slowly, accenting each point with an arched brow or rolling tongue and savoring an opponent's discomfort with wide-eyed glee."

In Buckley, God created a great mind and gracious man, and the world was blessed by it.  I am glad this man confessed his Redeemer.

That whole passage in Job says, "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God..." (vs. 25-26).

I believe he has seen God.  His flesh will arise at the promised resurrection.

Jim