26 June 2010

Camels Swallowed, Forest Still Missing and Presumed Lost

I have posted twice on the Liberty University / Ergun Caner controversy. If you are interested enough to be here now and are unfamiliar with my previous posts, you can find them here and here. Yesterday, Liberty University released a statement regarding the investigation into the veracity of some of Dr. Caner's claims regarding his testimony and accomplishments. You can read that here and here. There are several places you can read about this. If you are ignorant of the whole thing, consider it a blessing and decide if you really want to know.

First of all, for all the Christians who have insisted that Dr. James White had speculated about or that this scandal was in any way about whether or not Dr. Caner was ever really a Muslim, I am at a loss for words. Actually that is a fib. I am at a loss for kind words. I cannot conceive that you can be intelligent enough to have blogs but not intelligent enough to read clearly. Not just that but the man (Dr. White) has gone on record verbally that he has never doubted that Dr. Caner was indeed a Muslim. I get that you don't like Dr. White and his theology, but do so on the merits of what he does say. At least be honest about that.

Next let me say that I have no hidden agenda where Dr. Caner is concerned. I do not dislike the man. I only know him from what he has posted on Twitter and what has been posted about him in blogs and YouTube. The man has a quirky sense of humor and spins a good story. I think his doctrinal position is wrong. Were he and I to sit and chat, I could and would give a a defense of my doctrinal position and listen to his... and trust the Holy Spirit to do His work between us.

Here is my agenda. I love college students. I had the honor and privilege of working in Student Development at a Christian university. I believe that the entire administration, faculty and staff at any college purporting to provide a Christian education has the responsibility to model Christ-like behavior in word and deed. I do not expect them to be perfect but when they are not, when they fall in sin and are confronted, I expect repentance. I don't expect that repentance will be easy. I don't necessarily expect that all repentance will be made public. But I do expect repentance. I also expect anyone working on faculty or in administration at a Christian institution of higher learning to know the difference between sin and mistakes, misstatements and lies, as well as apologies and repentance. It seems my old professor was right, expectations are premeditated disappointments- when we expect anything except for God to remain true to His character.

I have said it several times before, but here it comes again. The purpose of an education is to be able to discern right from wrong and truth from error. I have no idea the breadth and scope of the investigation done by the folks at Liberty regarding Dr. Caner's public statements. I have no idea whether Dr. Caner has only apologized or has repented as well. I have no idea if the folks at Liberty had any intention of continuing Dr. Caner's contract as Dean before these events. Based on Liberty's statement, I have no reason to think that Dr. Caner has been made to see the importance of choosing his words carefully; accurately representing himself in a God honoring fashion. Nor am I able to discern that the folks at Liberty have considered that such monumental 'misstatements' made in public, where most prudent folks are careful in how and what they communicate, could be indicative of a larger problem that could manifest itself easier in smaller venues like classrooms.

Look folks, this all could have ended months ago with Dr. Caner saying two words, "I repent." He could have saved himself, his university, his supporters, his students and not least of all his family this turmoil. I don't want his head on a platter. I don't want anything but to know that the students of Liberty are getting what they are paying for dearly, a Christian education by men and women who themselves know the difference between right and wrong.

I am, therefore, begging you all to spend more effort praying for the students at Liberty than you put into endless speculations about the motivations of people on all sides of this debacle. Do I think Liberty University handled this correctly? No. Do I think they should have fired Dr. Caner? If he wasn't repentant I would have, but I don't know if he was repentant based on their statement so I cannot speculate or respond to that question. My hope is that he was. My trust is in a Sovereign God. He is sovereign in all things or He is sovereign in nothing. He works all things together for good for those who believe and are called according to His purpose.(Romans 8:28). My prayer for Dr. Caner would be that he take his teaching responsibility seriously and not suffer his pride to keep him from swift repentance when necessary.

James 3:1-8
1 Let not many {of you} become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we shall incur a stricter judgment.
2 For we all stumble in many {ways.} If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body as well.
3 Now if we put the bits into the horses' mouths so that they may obey us, we direct their entire body as well.
4 Behold, the ships also, though they are so great and are driven by strong winds, are still directed by a very small rudder, wherever the inclination of the pilot desires.
5 So also the tongue is a small part of the body, and {yet} it boasts of great things. Behold, how great a forest is set aflame by such a small fire!
6 And the tongue is a fire, the {very} world of iniquity; the tongue is set among our members as that which defiles the entire body, and sets on fire the course of {our} life, and is set on fire by hell.
7 For every species of beasts and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed, and has been tamed by the human race.
8 But no one can tame the tongue; {it is} a restless evil {and} full of deadly poison.
(NAS)

1 comment:

Victoria Lynch said...

Very wise words-thank you Rozie!ter