The Christian Restoration Association

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Cincinnati Christian University The Past—The Present—The Future

Mon, 2016-04-18 10:46 -- Lee

Cincinnati Christian University

The Past—The Present – The Future

The front page article of The Restoration Herald of June 2010 was entitled: “Apostasy In Our Colleges.” It was written by R.C. Foster and appeared elsewhere before that printing. He began by saying, “Fifty years is a good round number, but we should remember that man’s apostasy began in the Garden of Eden.” He then went on to talk about how 50 years “is a fairly accurate estimate of the critical period of apostasy in our colleges.” The article then pointed out what had happened in our colleges in the past that caused us to lose schools and have to build new ones.

Pertinent lines from the article include: “It was a keen strategy for the radicals to strike first at the colleges to capture the source of supply for the pulpits.” He went on and spoke of how they used a Trojan horse ruse to take over the colleges.

It was during that time period that The Cincinnati Bible Seminary came into existence and R. C. Foster was on the founding faculty. It has been about 45 years since his death and the school faces a crisis that dwarfs all others that the school has faced.

On October 23, 2015, it was announced that about 30 faculty and staff were being “let go” due to a severe monetary crisis. Not all of the names were revealed publicly but two prominent members of the faculty included Jack Cottrell (teacher for 49 years and respected conservative theologian) and Mike Shannon (longtime professor in the ministries department).

Immediately the phones began ringing, and Facebook and Twitter were lit up with questions.

On October 28 a “chapel” service was held in which the Chief Academic Officer, Tom Thatcher, and a trustee, Ron Heineman (who I have been told is serving as the Chief Administrative Officer or some such title), were to “be answering questions regarding the recent restructuring here at Cincinnati Christian University.” I came away from that meeting realizing that when a person begins with a wrong premise, he will end up with a wrong conclusion.

But before we get into that let’s take a look at the past concerning the school. Someone once said, “History is not a burden on the memory but an illumination of the soul.”

The Past

In 1919, plans were made to consolidate brotherhood agencies into one organization. James DeForest Murch, in his history, “Christians Only”, tells about this. He said that the Christian Standard realized what the liberals were doing so, it publicized a preconvention rally. Standard pointed out that…

“…there is an impending crisis in the affairs of the Restoration Movement, coincident with the spread of modern rationalism…

  1. Under this influence the Scriptural unity of doctrine is disturbed, among other evils, by the attempted introduction of ‘open membership,’ threatening the peace of all our congregations, and the very integrity of the Restoration plea.
  2. As a result, our evangelistic work has been well-nigh brought to a standstill.
  3. Our wonderful Bible-school progress has been halted.
  4. In most of our colleges classes for the ministry have dwindled alarmingly.
  5. In several instances, public journals, professedly loyal, champion the cause as a separate denomination, or sect rather than as the divine cure for sectarianism.
  6. Instead of forming a training force sufficient for a great Bible ministry, our colleges are too largely spending their energies in feeble rivalry of State institutions, under secular and not under Scriptural, standards of efficiency.
  7. With a foreign element of 40,000,000 souls within our borders, we are doing next to nothing to win them to Christ and through them, to open the way for the promulgation of the gospel in their home lands.

You can read the rest of that history in Murch’s book. But notice what was happening. Our colleges were changing from training a force for Bible ministry to rivaling the state schools. In other words, they were becoming liberal arts schools. (Murch lists our colleges that went that way).

In 1922, the Clarke Fund began. When Sidney S. Clarke died he left money in his estate with the Richmond Street Church in Cincinnati to help start churches in areas of the country where we needed churches. When loyal brethren heard about this they began to send money to the Clarke Estate to help start more churches, only to find that when an estate is closed, money cannot be added to it. Therefore they started the Clarke Fund to receive and distribute the money that was coming in. The elders of the church were already caring for the Estate so they asked some brotherhood leaders to take over the operation of the Clarke Fund. A few years later the Clarke Fund’s name was changed to The Christian Restoration Association. (For the rest of this article I will use CRA to mean either the Clarke Fund or The Christian Restoration Association.)

The first periodical of the Clarke Fund (CRA) was called FACTS.

In 1923, FACTS carried an article that said, “For the past ten years there has been a growing demand for a non-standardized Bible training school among the disciples of Christ. Preachers have wanted it as a place to take an occasional short course. Bible students have wanted it to perfect their knowledge. Above all, the churches have wanted it to supply sound ministers for their pulpits in larger numbers than now available. Men in secular professions desiring to become ministers of the gospel have insisted that their only hope lay in such an institution.”

To meet that need the Clarke Fund began The Cincinnati Bible Institute.

Their stated aims were:

  1. “To meet the immediate need of leadership in churches established by the Clarke Fund.
  2. To help solve the problem of brotherhood leadership.
  3. To offer a fighting chance for training to men and women everywhere who desire to give themselves to fulltime service for Christ.
  4. To present an opportunity for all Bible students to better equip themselves in the knowledge of rightly handling the Word of truth.”

The next issue of FACTS gave even more rationale for the school when it said, “Here lies our solution of the Clarke Fund’s problem of manning its new churches, in a large measure, the solution of the preacher problem in the brotherhood.”

At the same time that The Cincinnati Bible Institute began, another school was started in Louisville by loyal brethren. It was called McGarvey Bible College. Rather than have two struggling schools, the two merged in 1924 under the supervision of the CRA. It was named The Cincinnati Bible Seminary.

The object of CBS was to give the brotherhood a “loyal school, second to none in curricula and faculty, and the problem of securing loyal ministers, pastoral helpers, missionaries and Christian workers of every nature will rapidly decrease. Brethren everywhere have lamented the fact that our brotherhood has not had an outstanding, loyal, true-to-the-Book school where equal opportunity for preparation is afforded all who desire to fit themselves for full-time Christian work.”

In another issue of FACTS they spoke of a school “from whose class-rooms scores of preachers will come from year to year to many newly established churches, open closed doors and meet the appeal from churches needing loyal men from day to day. Our brotherhood will be in a fair way to regain all of the ground lost during the past few years and a brighter day will eventually dawn.”

In that same issue, P.H. Welshimer wrote: “The merging of Cincinnati Bible Institute and McGarvey (Bible) College ought to give our brotherhood a school that will meet the needs of thousands of our young people who are preparing for the ministry and for various places of leadership in the church. The need of the day is a well-trained ministry, and, by that training we include thorough indoctrination and a knowledge of and sympathy with the great principles of the Restoration Movement. Preparing young people to preach the message of the New Testament is the purpose of this school. It is worthy of the support of every person who stands for the furthering of this Movement.”

Another issue said: “Those who have given gifts will be anxious to see their money transformed into training men for the ministry. The Trustees (of the CRA) will be glad to see the dream of their summer months turned into reality. The students who are coming to C.B.S. will rejoice to enter the Bible College that will inspire and train them to carry the glorious gospel to a dying world.”

By 1925, the schools had merged completely. The old boards had been dissolved and the CRA board of trustees became the management of the school. The CRA board of trustees consisted of James DeForest Murch, Edwin R. Errett, L.G. Tomlinson, Horace Wm. Vaile, John O. Chappell, Ira M. Boswell, Mark Collis, Ralph L. Records and Rupert C. Foster. I must admit that I am not familiar with all of those men, but at least 7 of the 9 are preachers and I have an idea that the other 2 are too. It was a school governed by preachers, taught by preachers, to produce preachers.

The school was referred to in another issue as “The West Point of Christian Service.” Of it, it was said that it was for “training soldiers for war.” When was the last time you sang, “Onward Christian Soldiers!”?

Teachers included: Ralph L. Records, R.C. Foster, Robert E. Elmore, James DeForest Murch, Henry F. Lutz, W.C. Sayers, E. W. Thornton, L.G. Tomlinson and Edwin R. Errett. Most of these at sometime were CRA trustees.

[Interesting point: The last issue of FACTS before becoming The Restoration Herald, carried the following notice: “Henry F. Lutz, professor of philosophy and apologetics at the Cincinnati Bible Seminary, was asked by Wm. J. Bryan to attend the Scopes trial at Dayton, Tenn., as he might be able to render some assistance as an expert.”]

In 1928, the trustees of the CRA cut loose CBS to be its own organization. The CRA never wanted to be a controlling body. From the first Constitution of The Cincinnati Bible Seminary comes the following “The control of The Cincinnati Bible Seminary shall be vested in a self-perpetuating Board of Trustees….” That first board was listed in the Constitution of the school.

The first board of trustees consisted of Horace Wm Vaile, Roy Johnstone, Leon L. Myers, Edwin R. Errett, W. D. Willoughby, W. C. Sayers, R. E. Elmore, James DeForest Murch, Robert S. Tuck, Arthur W. Records, Andrew J. Loughery, C. C. Crawford, O. A. Trinkle, T. K. Smith, Peyton H. Canary, Jr., J. E. Henshaw, Ira M. Boswell, Rupert C. Foster, Ransom D. Perry, and Ralph Records. I recognize 12 of the 20 as preachers; I have an idea that more than 12 were.

So, as we have seen, the school was run by preachers to produce preachers to meet the needs of the churches in the brotherhood.  And what a school they built! Think of the thousands of churches that have been served by Alumni over the years. Think of how many mission fields have been opened. Think of how many other colleges were started and served by graduates of the school. As someone has said, it has been the “bell cow” of all of our colleges for many years.

But now it becomes more interesting. The Constitution of The Cincinnati Bible Seminary had Article IV entitled: CHARACTER OF THE CINCINNATI BIBLE SEMINARY. Read carefully.

ARTICLE IV CHARACTER OF THE CINCINNATI BIBLE SEMINARY

"(a) The Cincinnati Bible Seminary, in its endeavor to equip and train young men and women for Christian service, shall make the Bible its chief textbook, arrange all its courses of study, and conduct its work in harmony with the spirit and letter of the Word of God. To this end every trustee and teacher must be a member of the church of Christ (undenominational) and MUST BELIEVE, WITHOUT RESERVATION, in the full and final inspiration of the Bible to the extent that it is to him the infallible Word of God, and therefore the all-sufficient rule of faith and life; in the deity and supreme authority of Christ; obedience to the Gospel; the edification of the church; and the restoration of its unity on the New Testament basis.

"(b) Believing that such faith and a church with a program in harmony with this faith are essential to the salvation of the World, the Cincinnati Bible Seminary shall endeavor to so train and inspire its students as to make of them effective servants of Christ."

Notice that: “every trustee and teacher must be a member of the church of Christ (undenominational) and MUST BELIEVE, WITHOUT RESERVATION, in the full and final inspiration of the Bible to the extent that it is to him the infallible Word of God, and therefore the all-sufficient rule of faith and life; in the deity and supreme authority of Christ; obedience to the Gospel; the edification of the church; and the restoration of its unity on the New Testament basis.”

Article V is entitled Amendments.

ARTICLE V AMENDMENTS

“This constitution may be amended at any annual meeting of the Board of Trustees by a majority vote of the trustees provided notice has been submitted in writing to each trustee ninety (90) days in advance of the annual meeting, except that Article IV above entitled Character of Cincinnati Bible Seminary shall remain perpetually in force.”

The word “perpetually” means, “lasting or enduring forever or for an indefinitely long time; eternal; permanent.” (Webster’s New World Dictionary of the American Language.) That Article is extremely important as we move forward.

In or about 1993 the Constitution and Bylaws of the school were changed as the name had been changed to Cincinnati Bible College and Seminary. No longer is it called the Constitution, but simply Bylaws.

Look at Article III called Character and Purpose. It should read as the article above, but someone changed it.

ARTICLE III. CHARACTER AND PURPOSE

“Cincinnati Bible College & Seminary, in its endeavor to equip and train young men and women for Christian service, shall make the Bible its chief textbook, arrange all of its courses of study and conduct its work in harmony with the spirit and letter of the Word of God. To this end every trustee and teacher must be a member of the nondenominational fellowship of Christian churches and churches of Christ and must believe, without reservation, in the full and final inspiration of the Bible to the extent that it is to him the infallible Word of God and, therefore, the all-sufficient rule of faith and life; * in the deity and supreme authority of Christ; obedience to the Gospel; and edification of the church; and the restoration of its unity on the New Testament basis.

“Believing that such faith and a church with a program in harmony with this faith are essential to the salvation of the world, Cincinnati Bible College & Seminary shall endeavor so to train and inspire its students as to make of them effective servants of Christ.”

In the 1928 Constitution the word used for our fellowship of churches was “undenominational” but that was changed to “nondenominational.” Several articles have been carried over the years in this journal dealing with the difference in those words.

Also notice the * in the above article III. The 1993 Bylaws also carried in a footnote:

“* The term infallible means "incapable of error." It is the school's position that all scripture, as first written by the authors themselves, was produced under the direct inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Scripture is, therefore, the Word of God in written form and is infallible (incapable of error) and inerrant (without error) in its entirety when taken in the original meaning of its authors.”

The footnote did not change the Article so much as it helped clarify the Article.

So much for the past; now let us move on to the present.

The Present

Several items to notice as we come to the present crisis.

On May 14, 2015 the Bylaws were again “revised.” Read carefully the revision. Notice the changes that have been made.

ARTICLE III. CHARACTER AND PURPOSE

“The purpose of Cincinnati Christian University (herein "Corporation”, "University" or "Cincinnati Christian University") shall be to equip and train men and women for Christian service. To this end, Cincinnati Christian University shall make the Bible its chief textbook and shall arrange all of its courses of study and conduct its work in harmony with the spirit and letter of the Word of God expressed in the Bible.”

Please notice what is no longer in the Bylaws of this institution.

“To this end every trustee and teacher must be a member of the church of Christ (undenominational) and MUST BELIEVE, WITHOUT RESERVATION, In the full and final inspiration of the Bible to the extent that it is to him the infallible Word of God, and therefore the all-sufficient rule of faith and life; in the deity and supreme authority of Christ; obedience to the Gospel; the edification of the church; and the restoration of its unity on the New Testament basis.”

Teachers and trustees must no longer be members of the Church of Christ (undenominational)! What happened to that line and what followed it?

In the original Constitution and the one dated February 12, 1993, both had sections that said that the article entitled “Character and Purpose” were not to be changed.

The original said, “…Article IV above entitled Character of Cincinnati Bible Seminary shall remain perpetually in force.”

The 1993 edition said, “With the exception of Article III above, entitled ‘Character and Purpose,’ which shall remain perpetually in force,…”

Again the word “perpetually” means, “lasting or enduring forever or for an indefinitely long time; eternal; permanent.” The founders of the school wrote that as a safeguard for the school for as long as it shall exist. They had seen schools hijacked and they did not want that to happen to The Cincinnati Bible Seminary.

I do not want whoever changed the bylaws to have anything to do with the length of heaven because eternal to them does not mean eternal.

Article IV. Board of Trustees, section 2, paragraph 5 says:

“No fewer than Three Fourths (3/4) of persons serving on the Board of Trustees shall consist of members of the undenominational fellowship of Christian Churches and Churches of Christ Up to One Fourth (1/4) of the persons serving on the Board of Trustees may consist of persons who are not members of the undenominational fellowship of Christian Churches and Churches of Christ so long as each such person professes to be Christian and meets the other requirements of serving as a member of the Board of Trustees.”

I have reason to believe that not all of the current trustees are members of the undenominational church of Christ. I asked one trustee what his church was and he was hesitant to answer but finally said that his background was the Assembly of God. Others told me that he is a member of a Vineyard congregation.

I would like to see the trustees of CCU publish a list of names of the trustees (that is on the CCU website http://ccuniversity.edu/about-us/board-of-trustees/) and what church they belong to, what was their relationship with the school before they became a trustee, and what they bring to the table as a trustee?

Perhaps that same thing would be good for all of those who presently teach at the school.

Article VIII. Employment Standards, Section 2, Faith Requirement, paragraphs 1 and 2 says:

“All faculty members assigned to the Departments of Biblical Studies and Theology and all full-time faculty members assigned to the Ministry Department must be members of the undenominational fellowship of Christian Churches and Churches of Christ, must believe, without reservation, in the full and final inspiration of the Bible, that the Bible is the infallible Word of God, in the deity and supreme authority of Christ, in obedience to the Gospel, in edification of the church and in the restoration of its unity on the New Testament basis.

“2) All faculty members of any classification assigned to any department of the University must execute and subscribe to the Statement of Faith established by the Board of Trustees.”

Nowhere in the document is there any Statement of Faith established by the Board of Trustees that I can find. There is a call for the establishment of such, but there is no such statement in the Bylaws of 2015. And we have already seen that even if a Statement of Faith is the best in the world and the Bylaws would state that it “shall remain perpetually in force.” What would that mean? It has already been shown that people will do what they want no matter what the founders of the school said, so why shouldn’t others change the Statement of Faith that “Johnny-come-latelies” have written?

In the meeting of October 28, it was said that the “market for the school has changed.” The speaker went on to say that many want to come to the school but don’t because the school does not offer a major that they want to study. The idea was that the school needs to meet the wants of all those who would like to attend CCU so the school must change. But has the original need for the school changed?

Does that mean that if someone wants to attend and study nuclear physics that a program for that will be added? How about art? Animal husbandry? Olympic sailing? Engineering? Or scores of other disciplines? How far can a school that was started to train preachers go in being like the state schools and still fulfill its purpose?

Here is where when one starts with the wrong premise one will come to a wrong conclusion. The wrong premise is that The Cincinnati Bible Seminary or CBC&S or CCU is here to train everyone. No, it is not. It was brought into being to train a professional ministry.

If the school wants to have a program for “everyone,” then why not put together a one or two-year program that is strong in apologetics for those who may want to get a strong Bible background before going on to wherever to study whatever their interests are?

The school released a number of employees. Faculty were let go from the Bible, Theology, and Ministries departments. No one was released from Business, Education, or Counseling departments. Does that tell anyone which way the school is going?

Who made the decisions as to who should go?

I have been told that the trustees made the final vote but that people were suggested by the Chief Academic Officer and the various Deans in the school. Let’s look at some of those.

Tom Thatcher is one who has given himself to a study of the Word and to teaching. He has specialized in being a scholar on the Gospel of John but when asked who the author of the Gospel was he will not say that it was the Apostle John, but says it could have been. That school was not built on such vacillation.

R. C. Foster has an entire chapter in The Everlasting Gospel dealing with the Authorship of the Fourth Gospel. There is nothing new in Thatcher’s writings that Foster has not already dealt with. It is only new that someone who is not certain is teaching at the school.

One of the deans is Jamie Smith. Smith has been looked at many times for some of his ideas. Recently, I received an email from a former student of his who had this to say about Smith:

“The most noteworthy example occurred in the fall of 2013 when I enrolled in Dr. Smith’s early week class on Corinthians. While engaging a student in intense dialogue over the course of the class, Smith proudly stated in no uncertain terms that 1) he does not believe in absolute truth, 2) the words of Paul’s letters have no objective meaning, 3) he does not consider belief in the bodily resurrection of Christ as essential for Christian fellowship, 4) that he is a committed Socialist and Feminist, and 5) that the Restoration Movement is long dead.”

The student went on to write: “Dr. Smith was excited about the fact that large congregations are catching on to the idea that they can see more growth by hiring successful Christian business or athletic professionals to lead churches and give testimonials than they would with Bible college graduates. When this was made clear, the former student forcefully said that he would be contacting his church so that they cease supporting CCU. Smith then countered by frankly encouraging all small churches to cut ties to the school, believing them to be an annoying obstacle to this master-plan approach.”

When I asked Smith about these things he said, “I seriously do not know where these things come from.”

I have checked the above information out with another student in the class and he said that Smith said all of them, but also said, “I don’t remember him saying number 4.”

On October 13, 2015, Professor Smith’s wife, Mandy, who is the Pastor of the University Christian Church in Cincinnati, preached for chapel.

A question I put in an email to a trustee that has never been answered is: “Do the current changes mean that the historical position (and Scriptural position) of the school has changed in regard to the position of women as preachers and elders?” I repeat, that question has not yet been answered.

In 1986, the school went through another financial crisis. During that time the interim President fired an outspoken and popular professor on a Saturday morning between semesters. Many looked on that as being a way of telling the rest of the faculty to be careful not to say too much lest they too be fired.

I wonder if the firing of some of the most prominent of the conservatives on the faculty this time was a way of doing the same thing, as well as getting rid of those who might oppose the progressives.

It is most interesting that someone called to give me information about what is happening on the hill and he said, “I don’t want to give you my name. I want to remain anonymous.” People I have spoken with speak in hushed tones and their eyes move around to see who might be listening. They are scared!

Remember that Foster said that a Trojan horse ruse was used to take over the colleges. I fear that this financial crisis at the school is the Trojan horse by which strange and foreign (for CBS) teachings have been emboldened to take over the school.

In speaking with the trustee who is to straighten out the financial problems at the school, he said that he was only there to work on the finances and save the school, and that doctrinal problems could be worked out later. No, no, no! The financial problem is minor compared with what the school believes and teaches.

In the Sermon on the Mount our Lord spoke of money. The rule He gave was to “seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and these things would be added unto you.” Is it possible that the school does not have a financial problem as much as it has a spiritual problem?

Early documentation speaks of The Cincinnati Bible Seminary as being the rightful heir to the College of the Bible where J. W. McGarvey taught for so long. The article stated that many professors had learned from McGarvey and books written by McGarvey were being used in the classrooms. That brings us to another departure.

Several years ago I was told that no book written by a Restorationist was being used to teach the book of Acts. It has been said that a study of Romans began the Reformation Movement and a study of Acts began the Restoration Movement. I travelled over to the school and walked into the text book room and found that Acts was being taught by four different men at the time and seven different books were being used. Every book had been written by a denominationalist. Not one Restoration Movement book was being used to teach Acts.

When I called the Academic Dean at the time, his first reply was that Gareth Reese’s Acts Commentary was out of print. I checked with Reese who said he had enough to supply all of our colleges for years.

For a while after that at least one professor began using a weak Acts commentary written by someone in the brotherhood. Reese’s commentary contains the best of McGarvey.

As far as an Acts class is concerned, when I checked a few weeks ago they now have a three-hour class in which they study the book of Luke and the book of Acts in one semester. I believe that it used to be a four-hour class just for the book of Acts.

A former Chairman of the CRA board, Art Merkle, used to say that he took his Gospels course and Acts course that he studied at CBS and built the church in Wilmington, OH, from nothing to 450, with scores of young people going to Bible College.

My dad once observed that it seemed like each time the church got a new minister, he immediately taught and preached through the book of Acts.

How can we build a strong, excited, pulpit ministry when we don’t even know what to teach.

Future

What about the future? Is there a future for the school?

I would like to think that there is, but it is only by going back to the “old paths.”

Dr. Lewis Foster once told me that by definition theological schools are small. CCU’s mistake is in trying to grow big instead of deep. “If we just have more students then we will have more tuition and that will result in being able to pay all of our bills.” So instead of working to become the best at what they were brought into to being for, they say, “Let’s add another program and get more students that way.” So they add new faculty for the new program, and of course if they are going to have a new program, then they will need new dorms and classrooms, and on and on it goes in an endless line of adding debt upon debt.

Having pointed out the problems, allow me to make some suggestions for the future.

  1. Immediately declare the Bylaws of May 14, 2015 as null and void, since they are. They are out-of-order and must be recognized that way. If changes need to be made, then make them in the proper way. Trustees who do not meet the requirements of the “Character and Purpose” statement in the original Bylaws should be thanked as they leave.
  2. New Trustees who have the school at heart need to be elected. Those who have had a previous relationship with the school as Alumni need to be looked at first. Priority should also be given to preachers who will understand that serving as a trustee is not so much of an honor as it is a responsibility. Faithfulness rather than finances needs to be key in the selection.
  3. A new president needs to be chosen who is also an alumnus of the school and will not be absorbed by the honor, but will be driven to his knees due to the weight of the duty. He too should first of all be a preacher. He should have a backbone. A preacher at the helm of the ship will show constituencies the commitment to the task at hand.
  4. Someone like Johnny Pressley needs to be made the Chief Academic Officer and given the authority to both “clean house” and add necessary faculty to make the Bible and Preaching departments the strongest in the brotherhood. Jack Cottrell, Mike Shannon, and some of the others need to be brought back.
  5. Auxiliary departments (Education, Music, Counseling, and Business) need to be reviewed for both need and function.
  6. Staff should be cut to bare bones. New hires should only be made when a real need is shown. Recruitment needs to be out recruiting, and compensation should be based on success.
  7. All faculty and staff should be willing to represent the school in the churches, and be equipped with the message and desire to help bring in more support for the school.
  8. A new one-/and two-year program needs to be established for those who seek a solidifying of their faith before going on to a secular school. That program needs to be marketed everywhere.
  9. The light shining on the hill needs to be shining ever brighter as it goes back to fulfilling its original task.
  10. If an Accrediting Association gets in the way, remind them that their job is not to run the school but to check to see that the school has “processes that foster quality, encourage academic excellence, and improve teaching and learning.”* (*Taken from the Purpose of the North Central Association.)

Future for Churches

Churches also have an important part in the future of the school. As positive changes are made, the churches need to get involved. Remember that the church is what Christ left to do His will on the earth. The church cannot, I repeat, the church cannot give that job to any para-church organization or mission. Extra-scriptural organizations are not to tell churches what to do, but the church is to direct them. If you are pleased with the direction they are going, then support them and praise them.

It is past time for the church to take an active stance in the operation of our schools.

Foster spoke of 50 years saying that it “is a fairly accurate estimate of the critical period of apostasy in our colleges.” It has been 45 years since Foster went to his eternal reward. Jack Cottrell was the last faculty member who was privileged to study under first generation teachers in the school. Others are still alive, but he is the last teacher. That means that we are currently in the third generation from the founders. Somewhere I read that it takes about three generations for a school to apostatize.

President John Kennedy said, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” He attributed the quote to Edmund Burke, but in searching back, there may have been others who said that or something like it first.

The sentiment is from the Bible. You can read about it in the book of Esther. The Jews are about to be slaughtered. Mordecai finds out about the plot and encourages his cousin Esther to intervene with the king. She is afraid to do so because it might cost her her life. Mordecai tries to persuade her that she must talk to the king and says “And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”

Reader, please do something for “who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”.