Not only does Stu have a long career in talk radio, but he is the man who felt led to ask Dr. Brown to begin doing a radio broadcast more than six years ago. Dr. Brown will also be giving an update from China. Listen live here 2-4 pm EST, and call into the show at (866) 348 7884 with your questions and comments.
Hours 1 and 2:
Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: “Blessed is the man who walketh not in the council of the ungodly; Psalms chapter 1. Read that, study it, and pray about it!” – Stu Epperson, Jr. subbing in for Dr. Brown
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Thanks for hosting Stu,
I agree strongly that if a Christian College is an option, then that route should be heavily considered. I appreciate your fairness of the topic, yet the piercing reality of the questions you raised. I shall be reading over Psalm 1 in my study time tonight.
Thanks again Stu.
I found it interesting when Stu Epperson kept saying, “maybe your child will find a godly professor like CS Lewis at a secular college.” (I’m paraphrasing from memory.)
Has Mr. Epperson done much research on CS Lewis?
>>Clive Staples Lewis was anything but a classic evangelical, socially or theologically. He smoked cigarettes and a pipe, and he regularly visited pubs to drink beer with friends. Though he shared basic Christian beliefs with evangelicals, he didn’t subscribe to biblical inerrancy or penal substitution. He believed in purgatory and baptismal regeneration.
As a liberal Evangelical, I have no problem with CS Lewis. But I expect that many conservative American Christians would.
You say you have no problem with the man, yet you find fault with him. How is that?
When I was in grade school, about 45 years ago, in the 5th or 6th grade, I attended a public school as nearly all the children my age did in a town of about 13,000 people, and while I did, we were let out of school about an hour or hour and a half, so we could either walk or arrange a ride with someone else, to attend religious education, for the pastors in the town were concerned about our spiritual condition, and all got together, in unity on this matter.
I remember attending church one Sunday and seeing a different man up front, who as another pastor from another church who gave a bit of a sermon. This was a Sunday where our pastor told us about how all (if not very nearly all, the vast majority anyway) the pastors in the town, agreed to stand together to convince the public school system of the importance of reaching the young people during one day a week for religious education, and they thought it good if they would let them out early on that day to give them time to get there and still have time for religious education.
All the pastors spoke to all the parents in their churches and the parents stood with the pastors on this.
We had religious education like this for years because every year the pastors and parents stood together like this. All my brothers went through the same thing.
I wonder if pastors everywhere should insist upon one day a week, for part of the school year, for at least one hour a week at all the colleges to make room for religious education, as part of their program.
When I was in grade school there was always a student or two who apparently didn’t attend a church and did not participate in the religious education, and they either stayed during that time in school to study, or were let off early to go home.
I don’t have time to respond to your whole post but I just want to be clear.
>>You say you have no problem with the man, yet you find fault with him. How is that?
I don’t have a problem with CS Lewis. I’m just surprised that Mr. Epperson likes him so well. Lewis was not exactly the model of conservative Christianity.
(I need to skee-daddle but I might be able to get back to your response tonight.)
I didn’t hear all two hours. Did Stu Epperson say where he learned that the vast majority of Christian kids lose their faith at secular university?
Honestly, this doesn’t pass the sniff test with me so I did a quick Google.
Check this out:
>> FactChecker: Does College Cause Young Adults to Lose Their Faith?
>>In the last few years, social scientists have “found that the religiously undermining effect of higher education . . . has disappeared.” Professor Christian Smith, a world-renowned sociologist of religion from Notre Dame University (and a faithful Christian parent himself) explains that recent investigations published in the Review of Higher Education reveal,
>>?>[T]hat among recently surveyed college students, 2.7 times more report that their religious beliefs have strengthened during their college experience than say their beliefs weakened. (1)
Shouldn’t some religious instruction be worth some kind of credit at any college?
If the trend is turning more toward strengthening faith in God, that would be encouraging.
I’m thinking that a class on speaking in tongues and other manifestations of the holy Spirit should be worth a credit or two, as there is nothing like the new birth to help round out a man, you know… fill things in and all…make up for something missing…
And it could be practical too..
What do you mean by “baptismal regeneration?”
So why is it that Christians have to go to their own Christian college? What ever happened to going out into the world, not being a part of it, and being salt and light, finding ways to move the good news, get in there and get some work of the Lord done in his name, making a difference, interacting with the world around us instead of just being separate?
If 75% or more of Christian college students loose their faith while attending college, does that mean that the Christian faith is loosing ground in this world, or do they later on return to the faith they once lost?
I often wonder about statistics.
Now I’m thinking that the 75% may be more about Christian college students backsliding rather than leaving the faith completely.
Do you believe in separation of church and state?
I’m a strong believer in it.
I believe that a strict separation is good for the church and good for the state.
If the church gets to use the public schools for teaching the bible, this opens up a whole can of worms.
For example, which denomination? Do you want a Catholic nun teaching your child about Mary?
OK, maybe you are fine with the Catholics but what about about groups who claim to be Christian but you disagree. Do you want a Christian Scientist pastor teaching your child about what it means to be a Christian? And who decides who is really Christian? The mayor? The governor? The president?
No. It is much better to leave Christian teaching to the churches.
That was a quote about CS Lewis from Christianity Today.
(I had to refresh my own understanding of the doctrine.) Simply put, it means you aren’t saved unless you are baptized.
I think it comes from a literal reading of verses like Mark 16:16
>> Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
Did Stu say that 75% of Christian students fall away if they go to secular university? I couldn’t remember the exact number he gave. I now he repeated it a bunch of times and based his whole show on it.
I have a hard time believing it is that high. I wonder where he got it?
I went to secular university in the early 80s. I was fresh out of bible school and a conservative Christian — so I was pretty sensitive about such matters. I don’t remember any indoctrination or Christian bashing.
I got a Bachelor of Science degree so I had to take a number of science classes which taught old earth and evolution. But, that’s not the same as Christian bashing.
(My geology teacher was a devout Christian and believed in an old earth, BTW. )
The vast majority of my classes just taught grammar or computer programming or chemistry or art history or whatever and never touched on anything religious at all.
I just finished a non-science graduate degree at a state university and it was the same. Christianity — pro or con — just never came up.
So, I’m not sure of what Stu Epperson is talking about. Was my universities some exception? I doubt it.
By the way — for a number of years I worked for an Evangelical educational institution. I would do it again. My wife is a graduate of one, as well.
I think church-sponsored colleges are great.
But, I wouldn’t go to one out of fear that you would lose your faith at university.
Most public universities have campus ministries, campus pastor, churches in the surrounding community, Christian clubs, etc. There are plenty of ways to keep connected spiritually while at secular university.
If a kid falls away while at college, it’s probably because of issues during their teen years of family problems. I wouldn’t automatically blame the university.
As one who pastors a very small ministry at a large state university on Long Island I believe that we need to see the secular university as a vital mission field ripe for the gospel. Students from all over the world come to our universities to study and get a degree. Many of these countries are closed to the gospel. These student will return as leaders in their home countries. Let’s pray for our universities that God would send Christians there to reach the campuses for Christ.
“If a kid falls away while at college, it’s probably because of issues during their teen years of family problems. I wouldn’t automatically blame the university.”
Kids fall away from the faith as soon as they get a whiff of science or a dose of common sense.
Did you hear the show? I don’t think Mr. Epperson would disagree with the idea of a university being a missions field — he just thinks it is a “mission field” going the other way: Marxists, liberals secularists converting our Christian children.
Here is where I think there is some projection going on by conservative Christians. Evangelicals have long viewed secular university as a place to evangelize or even do spiritual warfare. So, they assume that non-Christians view university the same way. (the word “indoctrination” was used several times in yesterdays show.)
I just don’t see the secular equivalent of something like InterVarsity Christian Fellowship or the various denominational ministries who use colleges for proselytizing.
>>Kids fall away from the faith as soon as they get a whiff of science or a dose of common sense.
Science is not a contradiction to faith.
This is where the atheists have it utterly and completely wrong. They think they own science and logic!
I should have said “atheist supremacists”
Most atheists, I know, don’t think they are categorically superior to believers.
Thanks for that Greg.
Funny how a man can find many an unbeliever who will hold to whatever is wrong that he believes and doesn’t change when he finds common sense.
I wonder if a good radio program topic would be
“Do college students today receive more bad counsel or good counsel at colleges, and is there much more good counsel to be found at Christian colleges than at secular ones?”, and see what people call in about.
Thinking back at what little college I had at a community college in my home town, I don’t think I received a whole lot of bad counsel, at least I didn’t think of it as bad.
God is at work in secular colleges isn’t he? He doesn’t just do his good work in Christian colleges does he?
Now that I think of it I do remember one piece of advice from a counseller at the community college who gave me a piece of advice that I did at the time think of as bad counsel.
He said that it’s good to get as broad a base of education as I could, especially during the first few years of college.
At the time I was only interested in what I considered to be practical things, something I could use if I ever was a business owner in the building industry.
“Science is not a contradiction to faith.
This is where the atheists have it utterly and completely wrong. They think they own science…”
> Science explains the unknown with the known. Religion pretends to explain the known with the unknown. I see a direct contradiction and so do some young college students. Others may not.
> At the core of every theistic argument is a glaring logical fallacy. Students are often taught to recognize these if they study any philosophy, logic, anthropology or hang around with anyone who is or has.
Studying these subjects may or may not lead to a loss of faith. Obviously many Christians can reconcile their faith with what they learn or even teach about these subjects or any subjects. So many students are leaving the faith there have to be other reasons. Students lose their innocence in college [if they haven’t already] and that has caused students to lose their faith for as long as there have been students. Christians who talk openly about their faith usually will find themselves ostracized and wind up only socializing with other Christians. Often there are people in these groups who are in there for the wrong reasons and can be pushy, or control freaks, nosy or annoying in some other way and that can turn some of the kids off and away from their faith. Fooling around with drugs, alcohol and/or the wrong people can cause a student to become apathetic about a lot of things besides their faith. Just getting on a computer and seeing criticisms of their religion for the first time can be devastating for some young people and for other maybe not. Anyway, this is a subject I happen to know something about. Thought I’d share.
If parents are so sure their religion is true then they should just insist their children maintain an unwavering search for truth.
“I’m thinking that a class on speaking in tongues and other manifestations of the holy Spirit should be worth a credit or two, as there is nothing like the new birth to help round out a man, you know… fill things in and all…make up for something missing…
And it could be practical too..”
Ray, this cracked me up — best post of the lot.
Greg has misrepresented C. S. Lewis in this quotation from an American magazine:
“Clive Staples Lewis was anything but a classic evangelical, socially or theologically. He smoked cigarettes and a pipe, and he regularly visited pubs to drink beer with friends. Though he shared basic Christian beliefs with evangelicals, he didn’t subscribe to biblical inerrancy or penal substitution. He believed in purgatory and baptismal regeneration”
As is sometimes the way, we view things in a parochial fashion. In the UK, it’s not unusual to see a bible-believing, full-on Christian who likes a (warm) beer. Smoking a pipe is sort of homely and grandfatherly/avuncular, not heretical. We never had Prohibition, y’know. Few Brits would be seen as ‘socially” evangelical in American eyes, and not just because we like a Guinness or a glass of wine with dinner!
The Church of England practices infant baptism, so the reference to ‘baptismal regeneration’ takes standard CofE practice and makes it sound like something bigger than it is (i.e. like the American Church of Christ denomination). I don’t agree with infant baptism, but it didn’t stop HTB from starting the Alpha course, did it? Anglican churches do share the gospel, as repentance is the key.
I have no idea where the writer of this article got the idea that Lewis didn’t think Jesus died for our sins. Clearly that genius never read the Narnia books — Stone Table, anyone?
It is understandable that people want to attach Lewis to their own “camp”. I don’t think he belonged to US-style Christianity, but he definitely wasn’t a limp liberal, either.
Given the number of people who have been saved after reading ‘Mere Christianity’, Stu’s point is valid, especially as we mark the 50th anniversary of Lewis’ death.
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