Christian colleges dot our land. Most of them are affiliated with and partly supported by particular denominations. Most of them are in financial trouble, and a large number of them could immediately take more students without straining their facilities. Many offer an educational experience acceptable by secular educational standards; a few—a very few—offer work of exceptional quality in one field or another.
Why, then, is there talk of establishing a “Christian university”? Why not put the money into the hard-pressed Christian colleges already in existence?
Among the several answers that might be made, this writing considers only the one which emerges from this statement: it is not proposed to set up just another Christian college (or university, in the larger view) but a university of the highest academic excellence. This need is not filled by existing institutions. With full credit to those very few Christian colleges which enjoy the full and well-deserved respect of the world of secular higher education, the fact remains that such academic distinction is definitely the exception. What is looked for, then, is a university dedicated not only to the Faith but also to the highest and most rigorous academic standards, a university demanding the respect of the secular world of scholarship in the arts and sciences, and in the professions. At the core, solid, dynamic Christian unity; in the branches, solid and creative scholarship.
One need not profess Christianity to see the desperate need in American higher education for unity of purpose, for an agreed-to set of values. To teach facts without teaching values is worse than useless, it is dangerous. The power of knowledge put to evil use plagues our planet, and may plague it to ...1
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