“Publish or Perish”

I recently received an email from a pastor in Australia who read our new book Already Compromised that details results of research conducted on what is being taught in Christian colleges in the USA. I found this pastor’s comments extremely insightful—and urge you to read them carefully.

I also found his “publish or perish” comment very interesting. With so many Christian academics in our Christian colleges compromising with evolution and millions of years, many people have asked me why it is so.  The answer this pastor has given is what I have been told by many others, and it certainly fits with my own experience in meeting a number of Christian academics. I do believe the “publish or perish” syndrome, together with academic pride and peer pressure, really (sadly) explains much of this compromise so rife in Christian circles.

This pastor also makes a comment about why those who are trained for ministry haven’t really thought through the issues of biblical authority starting in the book of Genesis (because of intense indoctrination from their colleges), and thus why compromise is so rife through the leadership in so many churches.

This pastor, in the short email below, really sums up many of the issues. I urge you to read this and then pass it along to your pastor (I have deleted sections to keep his identity confidential):

[I obtained] a copy of  ”Already Compromised” which I read with interest as I lectured at [a university] before training for the ministry.

. . . your book did underline what is the real issue: Bible and Theological teachers and their view of Scripture. If ministers are compromised by their teaching in Theological College, their preaching and teaching will be weak and ineffective. Many realizing their inadequacy turn to the quick-fix [solutions]  [and elevate] the place of experience, [which] automatically downgrades the supremacy of Scripture. This is happening in the so-called evangelical churches of the Baptist denomination in Australia and it began when they sent their brightest students for post-graduate study to Seminaries in the U.S. that had already drifted from the high view of Scripture.

If your next book was based on a survey of Theological Colleges, I would read it with great interest because I am sure that is where the real problem exists -- and the Appendix of “Already Compromised” really showed that.

In academic circles we face huge pressures. The “Publish or Perish” syndrome almost forces academics to produce something new and novel which can be disastrous in Theology. Those with Ph.D.s are taken as experts in all aspects of their field, but that is not so. Almost all Ph.D. theses are in a very narrow field and so when these people come to teach, they reproduce what others have written. There is a tremendous problem of pride among Tertiary [College] teachers who revel in the devotion of adoring students keen to please them and do well. Hence it is a brave student who, for instance, takes a stand against evolution.

I found Theological Education to be by far the most demanding of studies I have undertaken. The curriculum is packed far more than that I taught to my graduate students at Uni[versity]. The result is you do not have the time to think or question what is taught, hence error can easily be assimilated. It takes years of Bible study to test what has been taught and even then the pressure of the ministry leaves little time for real evaluation.

Thank you for your book and the stimulation I gained from it.

– Pastor D., Australia

Why not obtain a copy of Already Compromised for yourself and for your pastors?

Galapagos Adventure—Day 6

Today Dr. Georgia Purdom of our staff posted another blog entry from her adventure in the Galapagos Islands. Here is an excerpt:

Today we visited the island of Floreana. It is also one of the oldest islands and has some 50 peaks, each of which represents an inactive volcano. It’s hard to imagine this beautiful lush landscape once consisting of tons of molten lava.

Floreana is famous for having the first post office in the Galapagos Islands. A large wooden barrel serves as a post office that was first set up by whalers to get messages back home. No internet or phones in the 1700s! They would simply put a letter in the barrel with a name and location of where it needed to go. Then another whaler would come along and look at the letters and if he lived in close proximity to where it needed to go would take it with him back home. Apparently it worked very well and the tradition continues today with people putting postcards in to be picked up by others and mailed home. I picked up one that I will send to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Visit Georgia’s blog post to read more and see some photos from her trip.

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,

Ken