I agree with Elder Goldstein that an Adventist university should …

Comment on Clifford Goldstein: ‘A Safe Place’ by Phillip Brantley.

I agree with Elder Goldstein that an Adventist university should be a safe place for our students. I suggest that our universities adopt and implement a rigorous screening process to determine which students should be allowed to study science and which students should not be admitted to class.

The screening process should include the following elements:

1. The university should make full disclosure of what is taught. The university should fully disclose that mainstream science is taught and accorded factual validity to the degree warranted by the natural evidence. In addition, full disclosure should be made regarding what science is, what mainstream science is, what the scientific method is, and what the differences are between science and theology/philosophy. The student should be warned that there are some Adventists who find the teaching of evolution in science class to be offensive. The disclosures should be comprehensive and exhaustive, so that no admitted student is surprised or upset. If the prospective student does not evidence a thorough understanding of these disclosures, he or she should not be admitted to class.

2. The student should be required to pass a biblical hermeneutics examination that demonstrates that he or she understands the relationship between the Bible and external data. The student should know that for Seventh-day Adventists science has no relevance in determining how the sacred text is interpreted or regarded. If the student lacks a cognitive and experiential understanding and affirmation of the historical-grammatical hermeneutic that rejects criticism of the sacred text, he or she should not be admitted to class.

3. The student should submit to an interview. If the student appears to lack emotional stability or the intellectual ability to compartmentalize and bear with tension between contradictory ideas, he or she should not be admitted to class. A psychological instrument could also be implemented to test the student to assess his or her suitability for the class.

Elder Goldstein’s concerns should be taken seriously. Not every student who wants to study science should be allowed to study science in an Adventist university. Not every student possess the requisite spiritual maturity to study science.

To study science in an Adventist university is not a right but a privilege.
It is appropriate to explain to a young person who might respond to the curriculum by passing out protest flyers in the middle of the church parking lot, “Son, I don’t think you are ready for this class. For you to discover that there is natural evidence that is not in harmony with the Genesis account of creation would be unduly traumatic for you. For your sake, we are not able to admit you to class. Thank you for submitting your application. God bless you.”

Recent Comments by Phillip Brantley

Strumming the Attached Strings
Dr. Pitman, you (or some other editor) unfairly edited my last comment and the comment that I responded to, so I am forced to wipe the dust from my shoes and leave you and others to stew in anger and confusion.

[Attacks on Shakespeare and the like are off topic and are distracting to the purpose of this website and will not be published – not even in the comment section. The same is true for other topics that many often attempt to post on this website – such as those dealing with homosexuality, abortion, women’s ordination, the personal morality of one’s opponents, etc. – ET Staff]

Strumming the Attached Strings
I appreciate the comment posted by Richard Myers, because it reflects the often-overlooked fact that a major basis for the agitation against La Sierra University is fundamentalist opposition to university education. []

Critics of La Sierra University should ponder whether their agitation is based on knowledge or the fear that accompanies ignorance. I sense a lot of fear. Fear is not conducive to cerebral thought and learning. Fear also stunts one’s self-awareness ego.

Critics of La Sierra University should adopt the meekness of a criminal defendant. You have to place trust in someone, particularly your attorney, even if you do not fully understand everything your attorney knows.

Strumming the Attached Strings
Dr. Pitman, I do not expect you to fully understand the California Supreme Court opinion or my explanatory comments. You have never learned how to think and reason like a lawyer. The law is much more mysterious to you than you realize.

I can explain a legal matter to you in all crystal clarity, but I cannot understand it for you. To respond to your last comment on the merits is fruitless, because I would just be repeating myself. I suggest that you read again the comments I have made on the various websites regarding this matter and La Sierra’s responsive statement.

Strumming the Attached Strings
Wesley Kime, you could learn something from Sean Pitman. He quotes what I wrote and does so fairly in one of his essays in which he mentions my name and discusses my views (regarding biblical hermeneutics and the relationship between Scripture and external science data). In contrast, you do not quote anything I wrote regarding the bond agreement. Instead, you misrepresent my views (in the eighth paragraph of your essay) in the strange lingo that you apparently find amusing.

It is elementary that boilerplate language has meaning that requires serious attention. The serious attention I give to the entire language of the bond agreement is evidenced by my review of the California Supreme Court opinion that explains what that language means. See, http://charitygovernance.blogs.com/charity_governance/files/california_supreme_court_2007_revenue_bond.pdf.

In your essay, you do not cite the Court’s opinion or quote and discuss the relevant language in the opinion. Instead, you invite innocent readers to surmise in their ignorance that La Sierra University is to be justly criticized for participating in the bond program.

Readers need to be reminded that the authority on California law is the California Supreme Court, not some novice who lacks appropriate feelings of embarrassment for making declarations on matters that are clearly beyond his expertise.

La Sierra Univeristy Fires Dr. Lee Greer; Signs anti-Creation Bond
I have just now read the responsive statement made by La Sierra University that is posted on the advindicate.com website.

Might I suggest to the critics of La Sierra University that a sheepish retreat and a period of self-examination might be appropriate?