Letters to the Editor
As a professor at a Christian college, I was excited to see the cover package on "How to Save the Christian College" [March], particularly the questions around the "browning of campuses catering to a white elite." Unfortunately, the articles did little to address this challenge.
I consistently see conversations about diversity in the body of Christ getting bogged down in fears of "political correctness" and political liberalism. Asian, Hispanic, and African American communities all have vibrant and growing churches. At many Christian colleges tied to majority-white denominations or traditionally white constituencies, we have to press on toward understanding what it means to model and teach a well-lived Christian life in more than one color.
In Christianity Today's interview with Gordon's and Wheaton's presidents ["Sailing into the Storm," March], the first question regarding the future of Christian higher education includes the sentence, "Some argue it's simply too expensive." Neither president directly addresses that issue. Many parents would like to send their children to a Christian college but cannot afford it or do not want their children to have a huge loan debt. While most colleges award significant financial aid, they are limited in how much they can offer.
Many students are choosing instead to attend state schools (where they can participate in organizations such as InterVarsity and Campus Crusade) or community colleges (where they can continue at their home church). It is becoming more difficult to convince parents that the "Christian" benefits of attending a Christian college justify the high costs.
South Bend, Indiana
If the famous question, "If you were to die tonight, do you know for sure that you would go to heaven?" [Spotlight, March] has finally died, I am glad.
Few things in life outside the mathematics classroom can ever be known for sure. This question calls the Christian to reexamine the foundations of belief: Are you sure there are no mistakes at all in your beliefs about God? Lots of people think they are Christians, but they're not; what if you're one of them?
The evangelist's question can be a terrible, paralyzing trap. The healthy Christian has to step away from the trap, acknowledge that doubts are part of the human condition, and determine to be a Christian anyway.
Glassboro, New Jersey
Regarding the news item "TMI in VBS?" [March], Voice of the Martyrs' curriculum isn't giving kids information they shouldn't hear. What they are forgetting are the demographics of Vacation Bible school programs. VBS regularly draws children who have little or no exposure to Christianity the rest of the year. Often the leaders don't normally minister to those age groups. As a Christian school first-grade teacher, I would be very comfortable including Voice's information in our content. But I have the time to build close relationships with my students and the benefit of organizing material that works toward a broader Christian knowledge. Having someone with little knowledge of their students' lives present persecution information, much of it very harsh, seems inappropriate.
In response to "Resting in the Work of God" [March], Sabbath is for the Jews. When Gentiles celebrate Sabbath with the Jews, they are identifying with the Jews, celebrating the God of Israel and his Messiah and his purposes. Sabbath isn't merely for sanctification but also for practicing the paradigm of the larger story. The form mentioned in this article is just a start. Receive it as a gift. But Sabbath is more than merely a personal experience for "spiritual" matters. If you are serious about Sabbath, the next step is to understand you are identifying with Israel, not just historically but today.