Thursday, February 01, 2007

A Christian Presence in Higher Education

Part of the thinking behind Edwards University is that there is a great need for a first-rate school that trains young Christians to think and work in a fallen world. As many evangelical institutions drift to the left, we would greatly benefit from a school that sets high academic and theological standards. While I do not speak a great deal about it, I am unshakably confident in the strength of Reformed Christianity and thus see it as the ideal foundation for such an institution. The Reformed worldview is incredible in its scope. It has a full and mature view of both the Christian faith and the outside world. It is thus an ideal starting point for a university.

We Christians very much need such a school today. We need schools that prepare men and women for ministry, yes, but we need schools that rigorously challenge their students. We don't need another Christian school at which everyone's an A or B student and professors routinely cancel exams or make them open-book. We need a return to the foundations of American education, when schools expected a great deal of their students. We should push against the current trends of grade-inflation and dumbed-down education. Students should be taught to think, not simply to do. They should be absolutely rock-solid in their understanding of theology, philosophy, history, literature, the sciences, and other disciplines. In an age when education is hyper-specialized and narrowly focused, there is a crying need for a school that will broadly educate its charges, and ready them to confront a world set against them. We need such a place. We need such a people. If you're a young Christian academic out there, think about this. You may well be needed in just a few short years.


Blogger Ryan Hill said...

Owen...that's a really interesting idea. You mentioned Gordon College in your previous post, but what is your opinion about Gordon-Conwell? Is it doing at the seminary level what you would want a seminary to do, or is it not up to standards you would want from a seminary?

11:05 AM  
Blogger Benjamin said...

Good thoughts. What do you think about classical education, a la Susan Bauer or Dorothy Sayers?

My wife and I have a strong interest in churches that organize their congregation's families into a "school for homeschoolers" where kids are trained according to the trivium under the homecoming banner, but can also come together at the church and learn from each other and from elders or other leaders in the church as well. Maybe that would be a place to start!

5:04 PM  
Anonymous krukker said...

Latin by 8, Greek by 12, high school baseball star by 16--that should be every parent's dream for their child.

4:38 AM  
Blogger Brian said...

I will pray for the day that this institution comes to fruition - and that you put an extension in Maysville, KY!!! (yeah, right)

4:45 AM  
Anonymous Bob said...

I don't know about all your ideas but if you need some help getting it off the ground let me know!

12:59 PM  

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