Third, we need to strengthen our existing educational institutions. Our …

Comment on Famous Evangelical Scholar Resigns Over Evolution by Eddie.

Third, we need to strengthen our existing educational institutions. Our professors need to feel appreciated and respected, not regarded as second class citizens, which is going to require a change in our culture. Let’s be honest, we live in a materialistic culture. But despite paying lipservice to living a simple lifestyle and serving the needs humanity, many if not most SDAs embrace materialism. We want our children to be successful, which means getting a quality education, obtaining a high-paying job, and attaining an influential position in society. In other words, becoming rich. Am I mistaken?

In our culture of service, what have we urged our children to become? Pastors, teachers, doctors, dentists and nurses. But which of those professions is the lowest paid and least respected by the denomination? Teachers! Anybody who teaches in a SDA college or university knows that many if not most of the brightest students aspire to become doctors and physicians, and such students comprise the vast majority science majors (e.g., biology, chemistry, biochemistry, physics). Why has health care become the holy grail of SDA professions? Is it because doctors, dentists and nurses are more motivated than teachers to serve people? Is it because doctors, dentists and nurses are less motivated than teachers to make money?

Each fall hundreds of wannabe doctors, dentists and nurses arrive at SDA colleges and universities eager to begin their undergraduate education. But within months, dozens trickle into the offices of their advisors, distressed and overwhelmed by their science classes, and sometimes in tears. When asked why they were pre-med or pre-dent or pre-nursing, many concede that their parents cajoled them to be. Some are distraught because their parents have threatened to stop funding their tuition if they don’t get better grades or if they change their major. I know what I’m talking about, because I can name a well-respected SDA physician who threatened to take away his son’s computer and stop paying for tuition if he didn’t get a 4.0 GPA during the next term. Have you ever heard of a parent cajoling their child to become a college or university professor?

As I have mentioned in other threads, SDA professors with PhD degrees in some institutions are paid less–in some cases up to 25% less–than SDA primary and secondary school teachers on the same campus. Can we really expect to recruit bright and aspiring SDA students to become professors who may be perpetually in debt to credit cards, will usually drive a clunker more than 10 years old, and may never afford to buy a home?

Eddie Also Commented

Famous Evangelical Scholar Resigns Over Evolution
If you guys really want to resolve the crisis in SDA science education–which happens to be a chronic rather than an acute crisis–here is what I suggest that you do.

First, I suggest establishing lucrative graduate scholarships to entice bright, young scientists to study to become science professors in SDA institutions. To ensure the scholarships benefit only future SDA science professors, perhaps they can be issued as loans that are forgiven once the student is hired by a SDA institution, but would be paid back with interest if not hired.

Second, I suggest establishing fully-funded endowed chairs in various SDA institutions of higher education. You can offer a lucrative salary and a budget for research, and control the selection of a professor for each chair who would satisfy your criteria of being an outstanding scholar who is firmly grounded in the fundamental beliefs of the SDA church.

Recent Comments by Eddie

Changing the Wording of Adventist Fundamental Belief #6 on Creation

SDA Bio Prof: The Bible makes multiple falsifiable prophecies about Nebuchadnezzar conquering Egypt, yet history never records it happening. Does this mean the Bible is effectively falsified?

Sean Pitman: Egyptians had a strong tendency not to record their losses… only their victories.

Sean, does that mean YOU personally believe Babylon conquered Egypt, just as predicted by two prophets? In the absence of any empirical evidence? If the Egyptians didn’t record their losses, why wouldn’t the Babylonians have recorded such a stunning victory?

Southern Adventist University opens Origins Exhibit

Holly Pham: One of the things that has always concerned me is that, according to what I’ve read, birds and reptiles have completely different forms of respiratory systems (flow-through vs. bellows) How is this explained by evolutionists?

Evidence from the vertebrae of non-avian theropod dinosaurs suggests that they, too, possessed unidirectional flow-through ventilation of the lungs. So, according to evolutionary theory, it evolved first in “primitive” non-avian theropods rather than in birds, and comprises one of many shared derived characters supposedly linking birds with more “advanced” theropods. However, I don’t think there is any evidence or even a hypothesis for a step-by-step process of HOW it evolved. Here is a reference:

Southern Adventist University opens Origins Exhibit
@Bob Helm: Bob, if you send me an e-mail at I will send you a pdf file of a 1991 article published by Chatterjee in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B 332:277-342, titled “Cranial anatomy and relationships of a new Triassic bird from Texas.”

Curiously his description is based only on cranial anatomy. I don’t think he ever published an analysis of its postcranial anatomy.

Southern Adventist University opens Origins Exhibit

David Read: Eddie, ecological zonation will yield the same basic order that you’re pointing to: invertebrates appear before vertebrates; fish appear before amphibians; amphibians appear before reptiles; reptiles appear before mammals; reptiles appear before birds, etc.

It could, and it’s the best creationist explanation, but it doesn’t explain why flowering plants were absent from lowland forests. Or why so many land plants appeared before mangroves, which today occur strictly in the intertidal zone. Or why no pre-flood humans have been found. Or, if Sean is correct that the flood ended at the K-T boundary, why many modern groups of birds and mammals (including marine mammals) which first appear during the Tertiary were not buried by the flood.

David Read: The fact that something appears before something else in the fossil record is not proof than anything evolved into anything else.


David Read: You seem to be complaining that God has not made the fossil evidence compulsory, i.e., so clear that no reasonable person can possibly doubt it. And if God hasn’t made the evidence skeptic-proof, then the skeptic is God’s fault, God is responsible for the skeptic.

I’m not complaining. I’m merely pointing out that the evidence can be interpreted in different ways by honest people. And I’m relieved to see that even you don’t think the evidence is crystal clear.

David Read: Only people of faith can be saved, that is, only people who are willing to trust God and put away doubts can be saved.

I agree.

Southern Adventist University opens Origins Exhibit

David Read: Those tracks are so obviously bird tracks that the fact that some scientists want to assign them to “birdlike theropods” is itself a very useful teaching tool as to how the model creates the data.

David Read: That the model actually creates the data is one of the hardest concepts to get across, not only to lay people but even to the scientists themselves.

How does the model affect the data? Data don’t change and they shouldn’t change. It’s the interpretation, not the data, that is affected by the model.