LCU’s ninth annual Lanier Theological Library Lectures event featured the library’s namesake himself, nationally renowned civil trial lawyer and Lubbock native Mark Lanier.
Living daily with the demands of his career and the desire for a godly life, Lanier recognizes the importance and challenge of finding daily time to spend in God’s Word. Mark has devoted his life to studying and living the Bible, teaching Biblical classes in person at Champion Forest Baptist Church, and via the internet and through print. He has also authored several books including Christianity on Trial, and his most recently published, Torah for Living: Daily Prayers, Wisdom, and Guidance, is a devotional study of the first five books of the Bible―the Torah, the Law. That passion is what drove him to create the Lanier Theological Library, through which he has helped bring speakers and scholars of international acclaim to speak at LCU over the past nine years.
"I grew up in Lubbock—I graduated from Coronado High School, graduated Texas Tech School of Law, and some of my undergraduate here at LCU. I loved when great national speakers would come in—it was a nice bit of exposure that you don't always get in Lubbock," Lanier explained. "So, when LCU gave us a chance to help find some of those people and bring them in, I found it to be a thrilling opportunity."
Lanier’s depth of experience in a number of diverse fields gives him a unique perspective—one that was evident in the topic for his recent presentation at LCU. “There're three roads in my life that have converged—the road of a lawyer, the road of someone who studied the Old Testament and learned Hebrew, and the road of someone who believes that the Bible is God's word. There aren't a lot of people who bring those three circles into a Venn diagram with anything left in the middle.”
“A lot of people struggle with thinking, ‘What does the Old Testament have to do with me?’ Most people get that we’re not supposed to murder, steal, lie, or bear false witness—but what's this stuff about not wearing clothes of mixed fibers? Why aren't we honoring the Sabbath on the Sabbath, which starts when the sun goes down on Friday night—that's one of the Ten Commandments—and how do we handle these dietary laws? Looking at those questions—taking the text seriously, but also viewing it from a legal perspective—is fascinating to me, and it’s exciting to get to share those thoughts at LCU.”
The founder of the Lanier Law Firm lives in Houston, Texas, and maintains offices in New York, Houston, and Los Angeles. Lanier was selected as the Texas Tech University School of Law Distinguished Alumnus for 2005 and serves on the law school’s Foundation Board and was a founding member of the Lubbock Christian University Foundation Board.
“I'm a huge fan of Christian education,” Lanier shared when asked about the state of Christian higher education. “I've told my children that I'll pay for them to go to any Christian institution—but I expect that, for undergraduate, they will to go to a Christian university. Because those undergrad years are not only fundamental to our intelligence gathering and, learning to pursue a field of study, or become an expert and get ready for a job—they are also fundamental developmental years, where the mind, especially the frontal lobe, is continuing to develop. You're continuing to understand value judgments, you're forming neural pathways that will become habits in your life. And doing that within a community that's based in faith will set people up to succeed.”
“I'm convinced that the Christian faith is not just a list of do's and don'ts, but it's God's opportunity to bless our lives to make us all we can be,” he added. “And if that's the case, I want that for my children. I want that for everybody. Everyone should have the riches of Jesus, who didn't just come that we would have life, but have it abundantly. And there's no better place to get it in school than at a Christian university or college.”
View Mark Lanier's full presentation and other past presenters on the Lanier Theological Library Lectures page.