Let There Be Light: My Resignation

Personal
**Please read: Let There Be Light - Leadership Transfer** Until further notice, I hereby rescind my use of the Let There Be Light platform (including blog, Facebook, and Twitter) to protest recent changes at Cedarville University. The LTBL platform will now be exclusively alumni-run, and I encourage everyone interested in developments at the University to follow their posts and make subsequent judgments regarding Cedarville's identity and vision. My goal in all of this is to honor my Messiah by following him well and furthering his Kingdom with justice, unity, and true peace. Let it be known that I am bitterly disappointed with the direction in which Cedarville University is currently heading. Unless its leaders frankly and forthrightly admit their agenda for the future and their recent decisions including the firing…
Read More

Open Apology

Personal
To whomever the following concerns:I'd like to apologize publicly to any persons I may have offended during the past few months of my student activism efforts at Cedarville University. After all, I recognize that some of my statements/claims about the perceived injustices at my University have seemed quite shocking, especially without further context. So I apologize for the times when I put pithiness before precision and unwittingly ostracized many good people whom I was not intending to criticize at all.Many times my frustration - directed at the nebulous group of trustees and administrators most directly responsible for things like the White Papers, the firing of Michael Pahl, and the firing of Carl Ruby - has seeped over and negatively affected some of the good people I'd like to defend and advocate…
Read More

For shame, Cedarville

Personal
This is ridiculous and dangerous. For shame, Mr. Scharnberg and Dr. Gredy. How dare you try and accomplish this (already concerning) return to fundamentalism in an unethical manner! How dare you sacrifice good men and their families on the altar of your own agenda, and then proceed to bathe your actions in lies!
Read More

Oh Cedarville…

Personal
Have you ever been extremely frustrated with someone/thing you love? That's been my experience during my final year here at Cedarville University. See, I love this place. And that's why I can't stand it sometimes. There are still so many good and godly women and men here, so much potential for God's Kingdom. And that's why recent decisions made by Cedarville Admins and Trustees are so heartbreaking. I've written about this before (Open Letter). The sources of my angst? I'll give you the top three from my growing list of concerns. The White Papers I found out about these a year ago, when I had no idea of the storm that was brewing. I won't spend time repeating what's already been well said about the Papers here and here, but suffice it…
Read More

Open Letter to Cedarville Admins and Trustees

Personal
To my sisters and brothers in Christ, entrusted with the arduous task of leading and directing Cedarville University: greetings, grace, and peace. Allow me to thank you all for your countless hours of service to this institution. I do not want to underestimate your care and concern for this place. In fact, I want to reassure you that I share your passion. Here at Cedarville I have been blessed with the opportunity of meeting, falling in love with, and marrying my wife. Even more importantly, at Cedarville I have fallen in love with the Gospel. Thanks to godly men and women here - whose vision of God, his Word, and his world I've been privileged to catch - my eyes have been opened to the richness, complexity, and scope of…
Read More

An Explanation

Personal
If you haven't read my previous two blog posts, "Cedarville, Let there be Light. (pt. 1 and pt. 2)," please go do so before reading this post. Summary: I've been blogging in order to raise awareness of Cedarville University's recent dismissal of Dr. Michael Pahl from his teaching post. Using the University's statement on Dr. Pahl, I've raised some uncomfortable questions that I believe need to be asked in this situation. For example: Why were the five accolades attached to Dr. Pahl above (in the statement, orthodox, gospel, Scripture, scholar, teacher) not enough to keep him on the teaching faculty of Cedarville University? Don’t we want promising scholars and dedicated teachers who are committed to the gospel, to Scripture, and to orthodoxy at Cedarville University? If not, why not? I'm writing…
Read More

Cedarville, Let there be Light. (pt. 2)

Personal
Read Part One Further Questions, All Relating to the University Statement on Dr. Pahl's Dismissal: If Dr. Pahl's book, The Beginning and the End, was controversial enough to lead to his dismissal, why was the book allowed to be used as a textbook last school year? Shouldn't we trust the Bible professors' judgment in their selection of the book as a text? If we should, then was it worth firing Dr. Pahl over a book which other CU professors approved of enough to require as a text for their courses? If not, why not? Why don't we trust these highly-trained men and women as an institution? Shouldn't they be a resource instead of a feared danger? Does this potential fear have anything to do with Dr. Pahl being dismissed? Do all…
Read More

Cedarville, Let there be Light. (pt. 1)

Personal
The Statement: "Dr. Michael Pahl has been relieved of his teaching duties because he is unable to concur fully with each and every position of Cedarville University's doctrinal statement.  This decision was made following a review by the University administration and trustees prompted by Dr. Pahl's recent book, The Beginning and the End:  Rereading Genesis's Stories and Revelation's Visions. Dr. Pahl's orthodoxy and commitment to the gospel are not in question, nor is his commitment to Scripture's inspiration, authority and infallibility.  He is a promising scholar and a dedicated teacher, and he will be missed by his colleagues and students.  Nevertheless, the University has determined this decision to be in the best interests of its constituency at this time." (more…)
Read More

Sacrificing Scripture on the Altars of Our Own Agendas

Bible and Scripture, Personal
Undoubtedly the title of this blog post could be taken in hundreds of different directions. However, given recent developments close to home, and the Answers in Genesis conference coming to Cedarville University on Sept. 23-24, I'd like to get people thinking about Ken Ham, his organization's agenda, and how Scripture might very well be getting abused for the sake of Young Earth Creationism. I say this as someone who used to be a zealous defender of everything that Answers in Genesis stands for. I viewed the Creationism vs. Evolution debate as central and foundational to the Christian life. I would sit for hours on end and listen to guys like Kent Hovind and their defenses of Young Earth Creationism... ...and then I learned more about how to study the Bible.…
Read More

My Unforgettable Cedarville Experience

Personal
(The following is an expanded version of the speech I gave at this year's CU Scholar Dessert Reception.) The first thing I ever decided about Cedarville University was that I would not, under any circumstances, attend. Since my administrator’s son, Drew Flamm, worked in admissions at CU, I had been inundated since before I could remember with calls to become a yellow-jacket, and out of sheer stubbornness of heart, I refused. Almost seven years later, and I stand before you all with the hopes of graduating next May. What changed? Well, for starters, God’s grace was, well, irresistible for even a stubborn high school student named Joshua Steele. While I don’t have time now to recount all the details, suffice it to say that receiving this scholarship was the final…
Read More