Friday, November 18, 2005

Mercer University...Baptist No More?

Dr. Bob Rogers has a sadly interesting post about what is going on over at Mercer University and their future as a Southern Baptist supported college. Apparently Mercer is "Baptist" in name only. A college that started by Christians as a Christian institution and over time completely removed itself from any semblence of Christianity, well that is just part of the American landscape. What college today over 150 years old does not fit that statement? Well, when we see this happening elsewhere we are not surprised, but in Macon, GA? And to a Southern Baptist school? The same convention that has done a yoemans job of purging itself of "moderates" apparently has some purging left to do...or does it?

According to Dr. Rogers the Georgia Baptists have voted to stop funding and cut all ties to the school. Now I can't argue with this decision one bit. Would I want my money going to support a "Christian" instituion that condones and encourages blatantly sinful activities? Of course not, and I agree with this decision. But a part of me says, should they give up that easily? I don't know all the details but I wonder what could be done to try and bring Mercer back to a institution that reflected Southern Baptists beliefs, not rejected them. Perhaps that is indeed an impossibility. I hate seeing Christians continue to seemingly back away from society and culture and instead confront it, or redeem it if you prefer that terminology. Instead of giving up on (fill in blank) lets get to work on redeeming (fill in blank).

Now let me reiterate, I am thinking out loud here and have no clue what the plans are for Mercer and I am not disagreeing with the decision to remove funding. I would just love to have a conservative, Baptist, missional college a couple of hundred miles away where my daughter could attend one day. I wonder if that is a realistic goal or am I just dreaming?

10 comments:

Dax said...

Sorry to hear about that. Just another example of the influx of Northerners taking over the South. Changing our landscape by taking over our institutions that shape young minds. Oh I wish I was in Dixie..hooray,hooray.

johnMark said...

dax,

Are you kidding about the Northerners taking over the South? If not, can you substantiate that claim in reference to Mercer?

Russ said...

JMark,

While I can't speak for Dax, I took his comment as slightly tongue in cheek, but understanding that his statement does bear some historical facts. I heard a presentation by Douglas Kelly of RTS a while back about the "Christian South". His claim was that during the 19th and 20th centuries, due to the increasing industrialization of the north, there was a vastly greater influx of immigrants from Europe, and they brought with them a far more secular view of the world, i.e. secularism, darwinism, humanism, etc. This influx of thinking was not as predominant in the South, as no one wanted to immigrate down south and pick cotton and corn. The effect was while the first few generations of "Americans"(including those before 1776) were either Christian, or operated from a Christian Worldview, the South tended to maintain this viewpoint longer than the North due to what I have mentioned. This can still be seen today, but to a lesser and lesser degree, i.e. the term we are familiar with, "The Bible Belt" has a reason and history behind it.

Does that make sense?

johnMark said...

The problem I see is that we are talking about today not the 19th or 20 th century. Unless you can give me some facts of this happening in our current time and economy I remain unmoved by such arguements. Also, dax said Northerners not Europeans.

And on the flip side of the arguement it takes two to dance. Is it the Northerners who said they want to go take over the stupid Southerners because they don't know any better? If Northerners are coming here today and "taking over" it ain't by force. Someone is working with them, doing business with them and selling them property, etc. Who is responsible for their own backyard the owner or the neighbor?

Given the state of the church today I get tired of the north vs. south arguements. Christian values start at home and in the church and it ain't happening enough to combat things like your post talked about. Christians have lost hold on the academy which I think is part of the problem. We can't blame anyone else. Though it's all in God's providence as He sees fit.

I don't mean to come across too harsh it just so happens that I talked to a guy the other day and he sounds like one who belongs over at littlegeneva.com.

For now...

Russ said...

Mark,

Like I said man, tongue in cheek. :P

Dax said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Dax said...

Mark,
I tried to respond sooner, but I was having computer trouble. I knew Russ would know the intent of my statement. I agree that we have far too important issues within the church to deal with rather than debating North/South ideologies. I also acknowledge that most all of our once founded theological institutions have been handed over to liberal thinkers no matter what part of the country they are in. There is still much truth to the fact that Southern culture/way of life is still under attack even today, but we can entertain that discussion some other time. I'll keep in mind that the next time I make a reference to Southern pride that a few carpetbaggers and/or Yankees might end up reading it.:)

Robert Cole said...

A comment from a "yankee."
I am here and I am here to stay!I plan to take over your racist, Arminian land and make it what I want it to be. I'm going to start by taking over your church. Then, I'm going to start a new school and pull the kids out of your schools. I haven't decided what after that.
If you would tighten up your Bible belt a few notches I would not have to do this.
Wow, that was fun.

Russ said...

RC,

Unfortunately, our friends from the "left coast" can't even be categorized as yankees. They deserve an even more deserving moniker. I have come up with one that might catch on. How about "wankee"?

Robert Cole said...

RJ,
That is too broad of a term. There is a big difference, for instance, between a Californian and an Oregonian. I like "wankee," but to be more specific I would be a, "Caliwankee."

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