Joe Carter of evangelicaloutpost has added a number of “sideblogs” to World’s main blog. Included is zeitgeist, a blog that seems to simply be smart people opining about whatever strikes their fancy (isn’t that just most of blogging?).

Biola’s own contribution is (of course) Dr. John Mark Reynolds, who has been less busy at his own blog but extremely busy at zeitgeist. His thoughts on Christian colleges are interesting. Most surprising, however, was this forthright condemnation by fellow commenter Tim Bayly:

While on Wheaton’s campus a couple months ago, I walked through the bookstore and, among other things, noted the preponderance of feminist tracts. This confirmed (were I to need the slightest confirmation) my daughter-in-law’s calm comment after graduating from Wheaton to the effect that Wheaton is a union shop of feminist ideology.

And after similar walks through other bookstores I ask myself why Christian fathers and mothers pay good money–lots of it–to men who turn around and rob their precious children of Biblical Faith? Certainly there are good profs at Wheaton and Taylor, but the academic culture is poison and even the good profs rarely have the heart to seek the expulsion of their evil colleagues–it’s a collegial atmosphere, don’t you know?

Ironically or tragically, for the past couple of decades the Bible department has been the center of Wheaton’s problems, and recent changes there do not bode well for her future. Thankfully, at my own denomination’s Covenant Covenant it’s (only) the English department that holds that position.

It wasn’t surprising because I hadn’t heard this before–I have even thought it (and said it) a time or two, mostly after intensly difficult, frustrating conversations with extremely bright students who had adopted postmodern theories of interpretation and truth. But to make a ringing condemnation of this sort is a bold challenge–I wonder what Wheaton would say to address it. Then again, there is no “Wheaton blog” to my knowledge, so we’ll probably never know.

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Posted by Matthew Lee Anderson

Matthew Lee Anderson is the Founder and Lead Writer of Mere Orthodoxy. He is the author of Earthen Vessels: Why Our Bodies Matter to our Faith and The End of Our Exploring: A Book about Questioning and the Confidence of Faith. Follow him on Twitter or on Facebook.

5 Comments

  1. I was wondering where JMNR went. Good to see World assembling a group blog like NRO’s The Corner.

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  2. I wonder why parents who spend a decade and a half pretending real thought doesn’t exist are surprised when their kids get to college, discover a world of thought, and leave the world of unthinking behind.

    Exposure to ideas, especially hostile ideas, is what higher education is all about (and to a great degree, so is secondary education). Kids need to be churched in expectation of that.

    I cannot count how many parents have complained to me that their smart children abandoned their anti-science faith when, headed for medical school or another life-related science career, they discovered the facts about evolution, in college. When I interview the kids, they talk about how devastated they were to learn their pastors and churches had withheld the truth from them.

    In engineering, that’s called “engineered to fail.”

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  3. Ed,

    I think the point is less about naivity and more about being disingenuous. The claim is simply that Wheaton is promoting worldviews contrary to its marketing material (i.e. feminist ideologies that are contrary a biblical faith).

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  4. Women living up to their potential is a key theme of the Bible. Wheaton’s a Christian school. What else would one expect?

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  5. Ed,

    I don’t think anyone is questioning whether Wheaton endorses women living up to their potential. Rather, the question would be about whether feminism is actually consonant with a biblical Christian faith. See my post (above) on Discovering Biblical Equality.

    You said in your original post, “Exposure to ideas, especially hostile ideas, is what higher education is all about (and to a great degree, so is secondary education). Kids need to be churched in expectation of that.” I’ve simply pointed out that exposure and advocacy are two very different things, and the writers of zeigeist were complaining about something closer to advocacy (a “union shop of of feminist ideology” was Bayly’s phrase).

    Reply

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