Written by Stephanie Lowery
Wednesday, 08 January 2014 00:00
I attended Biblical for 4 years, taught there after I graduated, and am now back here teaching again. Yes, I’m committed to Biblical: I love it.
Why did I choose Biblical?
Is Biblical the right place for you?
The first factor is the interdenominational atmosphere. Staff, faculty, and students are from a variety of backgrounds: Presbyterian, Baptist, Episcopal, Methodist, Roman Catholic, Bible Fellowship, etc. The result is a setting that allows everyone to focus on core aspects of the Christian faith, while dialoguing in a loving way about differences. In my opinion, it’s very important for evangelical Christians to be able to distinguish between issues that are major, minor, or personal opinion.
Secondly, I appreciate being in a place where different theological positions are not disparaged, but can be fairly discussed. There was never a hint from the faculty that one theological tradition had most (or even all) of the ‘right’ theological answers. This was a marked contrast from another seminary where I interviewed, where the faculty and most of the students were from a single denominational tradition.
Is there anything wrong with that?
No, but it can breed insularity and a sense of superiority, neither of which is helpful in learning how to engage our increasingly pluralistic society. It can also lead us to assume that all theological claims are equally important, which I don’t believe. My professors helped me learn to discern a point’s degree of centrality, and displayed what it looks like to fairly engage and represent another’s positions.
This mix of humility, respect for others, willingness to learn, and commitment to core convictions formed was a powerful example…perhaps I should say a Christ-like one? A professor who was verbally attacked in a public setting chose not to respond in kind, and instead prayed for those who treated him harshly. In a society obsessed with rights, this response demonstrates an alternate way of living, one which does not put self first.
These are some of the features of the Biblical community that appeal to me, challenge me to grow in Christ-likeness, and make me thankful for the opportunity to be part of this community.
The purpose of this blog will be to expand the influence of our faculty, maintain contact with our graduates, and invite other friends to think with us about important biblical and theological ideas.