Another college feels it needs to take a “stand” on the Bible–meaning recommitting themselves to a view of the Bible that is inexcusable for an institution granting academic degrees, whether in Bible, the sciences, Christian thought, or anything else.
Professors at Bryan College are understandably worried about their jobs. They will now be required to educate students while at the same time holding to views that are very difficult for educated people to hold.
They will have to choose which side of the line to stand on, for “Bryan’s statement of faith, more than 80 years old, isn’t allowed to be amended or changed, according to its charter.” It can, however, be “clarified,” i.e., tightened so crafty, progressive professors who want to find ways to grapple with scientific facts (yes, “facts”–you heard me) within their conservative tradition will no longer be able to get away with it.
Hence the original statement:
“that the origin of man was by fiat of God in the act of creation as related in the Book of Genesis; that he was created in the image of God; that he sinned and thereby incurred physical and spiritual death;”
is “clarified” thus:
“We believe that all humanity is descended from Adam and Eve. They are historical persons created by God in a special formative act, and not from previously existing life forms.”
So, that’s that.
I’ve said this many times and I’ll say it again. A school can govern itself any way it wishes and can believe what it wants to believe. It can govern itself intellectually back into the Stone Age for all I care (provided that Stone Age didn’t begin more than 6000 years ago), and students and their parents are free to pay nearly $30,000 a year for the right.
The shame, the travesty, and I will even say the injustice, is that thoughtful people who are academically trained in various disciplines, who are supportive of their tradition, who have given their lives to be thoughtful men and women of faith, and who in their experience and wisdom see the need to bring their disciplines into some conversation with that tradition, are barred from doing so, because…well…we just don’t do that around here.
This is what a dying tradition looks like.