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America's Best Colleges

By Jay Rogers
Published November 1, 1990

A U.S. News and World Report Special Issue (October 15, 1990) included an annual ranking of America’s best colleges. The system used to rank 1374 four-year colleges was based on a numerical score representing the quality of academic reputation, student selectivity, faculty resources and student satisfaction.

The top 25 big universities and small colleges were chosen in view of the overall quality of each school. These were institutions which had “first-class students, top faculty and a reputation for excellence.” Most of these schools could also be called “the most famous schools in America.”

The best big universities were chosen for a blend of matchless scholarship and research and a superb range of academic choices. The top ten, in order of rank, were: Harvard, Stanford, Yale, Princeton, California Institute of Technology, MIT, Duke, Dartmouth, Cornell and Columbia.

Choosing Harvard as the country’s leading university may seem a bit redundant. However, this is the first time since 1983 that Harvard has finished first on U.S. News’ list. Founded in 1636 as a school for ministers, Harvard is both the richest and oldest learning institution in the country. The campus sprawls along the Charles River in both Cambridge and Boston and boasts 10 graduate schools and more than 90 libraries. The university has been a pioneer in innovative education since its beginning and has provided the training ground for the nation’s political and intellectual establishment.

In choosing the top 25 best small colleges, the same criteria was applied. To many, small, liberal arts colleges represent what higher education is all about. The top ten small colleges were: Amherst, Swarthmore, Williams, Bowdoin, Wellesley, Pomona, Wesleyan (CT), Middlebury, Smith, and (tied in a three-way place for tenth) Davidson, Vassar and Carleton.

Amherst College had a strong showing in the intellectual achievement of the students. According to one Amherst College professor, the students arrive with a self-confidence that comes from prior academic success and readily adapt to the method of Socratic debate that is the backbone of most of the school’s courses. Nestled in the picturesque Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, Amherst College shares the academic resources of four other schools in the area, in a consortium which provides the greatest range of interdisciplinary programs available anywhere in the country.

The educational institutions of our country provide the foundation for our quality of life. New discoveries, expert knowledge and highly trained people are the contributions to our society that these institutions produce. Significantly, the two winners in this year’s U.S. News survey, Harvard and Amherst have notable histories as Christian institutions.

Although the students and faculties of these two schools may have forgotten, Harvard was founded “For Christ and the Church,” and Amherst’s frequent revivals in the early history of the school made the college one of the focal points of the Great Awakening in the 1800s. These schools remain great today because God Himself had a hand in bringing them into being.

See also: The Boston Awakening


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Frank Schaeffer Will You Please Shut Up! (Book)

High Quality Paperback — 200 pages

A Reasonable Response to Christian Postmodernism

Includes a response to the book Christian Jihad by Colonel V. Doner

The title of this book is a misnomer. In reality, I am not trying to get anyone to shut up, but rather to provoke a discussion. This book is a warning about the philosophy of “Christian postmodernism” and the threat that it poses not only to Christian orthodoxy, but to the peace and prosperity our culture as well. The purpose is to equip the reader with some basic principles that can be used to refute their arguments.

Part 1 is a response to some of the recent writings by Frank Schaeffer, the son of the late Francis Schaeffer. This was originally written as a defense against Frank’s attacks on pro-life street activism – a movement that his father helped bring into being through his books, A Christian Manifesto, How Should We Then Live? and Whatever Happened to the Human Race? These works have impacted literally hundreds of thousands of Christian activists.

Part 2 is a response to Colonel Doner and his book, Christian Jihad: Neo-Fundamentalists and the Polarization of America. Doner was one of the key architects of the Christian Right that emerged in the 1980s, who now represents the disillusionment and defection many Christian activists experienced in the 1990s and 2000s. There is still great hope for America to be reformed according to biblical principles. As a new generation is emerging, it is important to recognize the mistakes that Christian activists have made in the past even while holding to a vision for the future.

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The Real Jesus: A Defense of the Historicity and Divinity of ChristThe Real Jesus: A Defense of the Historicity and Divinity of Christ (DVD)

Who is the Real Jesus?

Ever since the dawn of modern rationalism, skeptics have sought to use textual criticism, archeology and historical reconstructions to uncover the “historical Jesus” — a wise teacher who said many wonderful things, but fulfilled no prophecies, performed no miracles and certainly did not rise from the dead in triumph over sin.

Over the past 100 years, however, startling discoveries in biblical archeology and scholarship have all but vanquished the faulty assumptions of these doubting modernists. Regrettably, these discoveries have often been ignored by the skeptics as well as by the popular media. As a result, the liberal view still holds sway in universities and impacts the culture and even much of the church.

The Real Jesus explodes the myths of these critics and the movies, books and television programs that have popularized their views. Presented in ten parts — perfect for individual, family and classroom study — viewers will be challenged to go deeper in their knowledge of Christ in order to be able to defend their faith and present the truth to a skeptical modern world – that the Jesus of the Gospels is the Jesus of history — “the same yesterday, today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). He is the real Jesus.

Speakers include: George Grant, Ted Baehr, Stephen Mansfield, Raymond Ortlund, Phil Kayser, David Lutzweiler, Jay Grimstead, J.P. Holding, and Eric Holmberg.

Ten parts, over two hours of instruction!

Running Time: 130 minutes

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God's Law and SocietyGod's Law and Society (DVD)

Download the Free Study Guide!

God’s Law and Society powerfully presents a comprehensive worldview based upon the ethical system found in the Law of God.

Speakers include: R.J. Rushdoony, George Grant, Howard Phillips, R.C. Sproul Jr., Ken Gentry, Gary DeMar, Jay Grimstead, Steven Schlissel, Andrew Sandlin, Eric Holmberg, and more!

Sixteen Christian leaders and scholars answer some of the most common questions and misconceptions related to this volatile issue:

1. Are we under Law or under Grace?
2. Does the Old Testament Law apply today?
3. Can we legislate morality?
4. What are the biblical foundations of government?
5. Was America founded as a Christian nation?
6. What about the separation of Church and State?
7. Is neutrality a myth?
8. What about non-Christians and the Law of God?
9. Would there be “freedom” in a Christian republic?
10. What would a “Christian America” look like?

Perfect for group instruction as well as personal Bible study.

Ten parts, over four hours of instruction!

Running Time: 240 minutes

Watch over 60 on-line video interviews from God’s Law and Society.

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Amazing GraceAmazing Grace: The History and Theology of Calvinism (DVD)

Download the Free Study Guide!

Just what is Calvinism?

Does this teaching make man a deterministic robot and God the author of sin? What about free will? If the church accepts Calvinism, won’t evangelism be stifled, perhaps even extinguished? How can we balance God’s sovereignty and man’s responsibility? What are the differences between historic Calvinism and hyper-Calvinism? Why did men like Augustine, Luther, Calvin, Spurgeon, Whitefield, Edwards and a host of renowned Protestant evangelists embrace the teaching of predestination and election and deny free will theology?

This is the first video documentary that answers these and other related questions. Hosted by Eric Holmberg, this fascinating three-part, four-hour presentation is detailed enough so as to not gloss over the controversy. At the same time, it is broken up into ten “Sunday-school-sized” sections to make the rich content manageable and accessible for the average viewer.

Running Time: 257 minutes

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Abortion Clinic 911 Calls (DVD)

Exposes the Dangers of Abortion to Women!

These shocking eyewitness accounts expose the dangers of abortion not only to unborn children, but to the health and lives women as well. An antidote to the smokescreens of the liberal media, these short clips show what really happens in and around abortion clinics.

Although the content is emotionally gut-wrenching, these videos have been used in church seminars and small groups to educate Christians on the abortion issue and to lead people toward a pro-life position. Contains 2 hours and 40 minutes of materials that can be shown separately.

Watch these pro-life videos on-line.

“These videos helped change my mind from pro-choice to pro-life. Your videos are what did it for me. I will be walking in next year’s March For Life in San Francisco.” — A. Jackson, California

“I was going to have an abortion until I saw your video. Praise Jesus!”
— M. Drew, YouTube Commenter

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