Dear Congregation and friends of RRPC,
evening Johnny and I celebrated the NBA draft of Jimmer Fredette at
evening at the Glens Falls Civic Center where over a thousand turned out to watch the ESPN telecast of the 2011 NBA Basketball
Draft. Jimmer grew up in Glens Falls as an avid basketball player for the Indians, and played four years at Brigham
Young University where in his senior year he was recognized as the Naismith College Player of the Year. As the
leading scorer in college basketball for 2010-2011, Jimmer won every significant national basketball award
for the season, including the John R. Wooden Award and the Oscar Robertson Trophy, which Johnny and I got to see up close
and personal as part of a career display at the Civic Center.
In 2007 Jimmer had signed a hand-written
contract with his older brother T.J. Fredette as a witness: "I James T Fredette agree on this day Jan. 27,
2007 to do the work and make the necessary sacrifices to be able to reach my ultimate goal of playing in the NBA".
Jimmer was not expected to be drafted in the top ten, because although he is an outstanding scorer, his quickness and
defensive abilities were questioned at the NBA level of play. But when the number ten pick rolled around, he was drafted
by the Milwaukee Bucks, and then was immediately traded to the Sacramento Kings. The Civic Center went wild, and
in between our whooping and hollering, I struggled to hear him and his brother T.J. speak on the Jumbotron as they were interviewed
over the din of the crowd.
Jimmer Fredette is a good role model in athletics, with
high moral values, and an interest in giving back to and connecting to his hometown here in "Hometown, U.S.A.",
Glens Falls, New York. Johnny got a "high-five" from him earlier this year at an assembly at the Glens Falls
Middle School, where Jimmer spoke about establishing goals, working hard, keeping focussed without the distractions of alcohol
and drugs. I wish him well, and pray for him that he would recognize and confess Jesus Christ as the unique, only begotten
Son of God, who has always been God, not just one among many sons of God who used to be men. Mormons believe that the
Heavenly Father used to be a man who was promoted to being a god by virtue of his works in another part of the universe. Quoting
from an article by Pastor Cooper Abrams, of the Price Baptist Church in Utah . http://www.seafox.com/mormons.html
Note the following quote from the Mormon Journal of Discourses, vol.
1, page 123, made by the LDS Apostle Orson Hyde:
"Remember that God, our heavenly Father,
was perhaps once a child, a mortal like we ourselves, and rose step by step in the scale of progress, in the school of advancement;
has moved forward and overcome, until He has arrived at the point were He is."
late President of the Mormon church, made this statement in the second verse of his famous poem entitled, "Man's Destiny":
"As Abra'm, Isaac, Jacob, too, babes, then men--to gods they grew. As man now is, our God once was; As now
God is, so man may be,-- Which doth unfold man's destiny. . ."
deny the central importance of the sacrifice of Christ's blood at Calvary as the atonement for our sins.
is a challenging thing for believers to know how to interact with Mormons in athletics and in politics and society, since
Mormons have a strong influence for strong moral values in our culture, a culture which goes so astray, literally, a perverse
and corrupt generation. For example, be in prayer and contact your senator in our state of New York as the legalization
of gay "marriage" is considered in the Senate, with "marriage" in quotes, because it could never
be marriage, no matter what the New York State Governor, Andrew Cuomo, wants to force upon us.
I will pray for Jimmer, as long as I follow him in the NBA, that he would see the light and come home to his
"Hometown U.S.A." a born-again, evangelical Christian. I will also be praying for Kyle Korver, an evangelical
Christian who plays for the Bulls, that he would maintain his hearty witness for Jesus Christ in the NBA. During the
run up to the draft, I heard Jimmer and Kyle unfavorably compared as slow defensive players whom the opposition attack and
take advantage of. They may be similar in that regard, and they are similar in their high moral values. But the
difference is this. (We know Kyle's family from Northwest Iowa where one of Lois's aunts, Aunt Angie, married into
the Korver familly, a great Christ-honoring, talented, athletic family). Kyle trusts in Jesus Christ and what Christ did in
his righteous life of active obedience, and his passive obedience unto death at the cross, through which we are forgiven and
justified, given a place in God's family as his sons through adoption, not through our own meritorious works.
Jimmer, I hope that I could JAM some day with you in heaven, praising God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit in
a beautiful chorus of praise to the one true God, who calls us into His family through faith in Christ alone, by grace alone.
Come to Christ in faith, leaving behind all works of our own. Be drafted by Him. He will never trade you away.
Pastor Ned Suffern