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What a terrific article Dr. Dunlap has written! If he dares, a worthy book could come of his insights on human(ist) education under Church aegis: something like, “The City of Mice.” Notice I can’t dignify the ungodly with the title Man… These tares among the wheat constantly try to choke the fruit production of the real Christians. For reference see the great Presbyterian scholar J. Gresham Machen’s “Christianity and Liberalism,” just as current today as when he wrote it in 1923 (and got defrocked for his effrontery).
I first clicked on the on-line article because the topic mentioned Aurelius Augustine. I admire the great Doctor immensely Dr. Dunlap, I would love to take your course on the Bishop of Hippo.
What Ex Corde Ecclesia promulgates I confess I know only secondhand. But I can read the Bible. In His inscripturated Word the Lord God declares that the foolish, humanist notions of “academic freedom” have no part in Him. To the contrary, Christian people, students and professors included, must “have the mind of Christ”; to “take every thought captive” to Christ; to “have no other gods before Me”; to “love the Lord your God with all your …mind”. Christ declared “He who is not for me is against me” and again, “He who is not against us is for us.” No autonomous “neutrality” or “freedom” there!
Your use of the word “autonomous” hits exactly the right note, in describing supposedly “christian” educators rebelling against their Church and its Head. That’s original sin showing itself in the Land O Lakes declaration. Just like all other false gods, Humanism shows itself fiercely antinomian in standing against the Triune God.
Augustine’s doctrine on predestination may have some application to nominally-“christian” human institutions, educational or otherwise, that fall off the orthodoxy wagon. God the Holy Spirit has preserved, does and will preserve Christ’s “one holy catholic church,” for the glory of God the Father. On the evidence of history, no institution created by men has ever survived as a truly Christian institution honoring Christ as Prophet, Priest and King. No matter how godly the founders were or how good their intentions, every single human Christian institution eventually drifts into error, stumbles into heterodoxy, falls into heresy, and ends up pagan. Evidence? Harvard College, founded 1636 to train Puritan ministers … Yale … Princeton … Duke … Notre Dame … Howard … Wilberforce… And even those many schools that haven’t yet bowed the knee to Baal…will someday. Call it a natural law principle of Divine entropy. “I am the Lord God; I will not give My glory to another.” I suspect that God will never allow any humanly-created institution to survive more than a few generations.
While we’re on that point by the way, Dr. Dunlap, you may count me as joining Augustine on predestination. By that Biblical term we recognize God’s destining, in His sovereign grace, each and every element of His creation for His own purposes, logically prior to any element ever existing. My first encounters with Saint Augustine came via his 16th century heirs: magisterial Protestant Reformers Martin Luther (“The Bondage of the Will”) and John Calvin (“Institutes of the Christian Religion”); all of them appear to “rightly divide” God’s “word of truth” on this issue of “control.”
On reading The City of God some years ago another insight struck me, one which is reflected in Dr. Dunlap’s close. That mighty book ought to be rewritten and republished today. Augustine makes a perfect critique of today’s pluralist, licentious, selfish, post-Christian and quasi-pagan, Western society (which so resembles the declining Roman Empire of the 4th century). Dr. Dunlap?p>Thanks again for a fascinating article. br> — David James Hanson br> Fayette, Iowa /p>
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