Convictions, College Campuses, and Grandchildren

Mike Adams is an educator, columnist, and activist for free speech on university campuses.  I have read his columns from time to time on Townhall and was mostly interested in them because of his transformation from atheist to Christian.  Reading his current column about Cru (formerly known as Campus Crusade for Christ) is informative.  Adams notes that Cru failed to stand up for free speech when its campus ministry was adversely affected by university decisions.  He further states that Cru’s leadership failed to stand in unity with him and other Christians in seeking freedom of speech when Adams filed a suit against UNCWilmington in 2008.  Now that Adams’ suit has been won and Adams has been given full professorship and back pay, Cru leaders are inviting him to be a partner in its ministry team after 8 years of absolute silence. He has been called “un-Christ-like” in a public venue by a Cru member for criticizing Cru’s lack of action. Part of his response to that Cru member’s public rebuke is here:
“In other words, your ministry and its leaders were never interested in unity. They never offered support in public or even in private. They only sought to profit financially from those who win battles Campus Crusade chooses to avoid.  Such victories preserve my right to criticize hypocrisy on our nation’s campuses. I do not accept your suggestion that campus ministries are immune from such criticism. In fact, it would be un-Christ-like to give the Pharisees a pass.”

Adams has shown courage and put himself at personal risk professionally and financially to stand for a principle that is about Christianity’s right to be among the voices in the public square in academia, but is also about one of our preeminent rights as citizens of a free nation. He has done it not only for himself, but for others. It is refreshing to see one who has the courage of his convictions in an arena that has become increasingly antagonistic to Christianity.
Our oldest grandchild will start college next year.  One hears stories regularly now of young people raised in the church who, when they get to some colleges, hear anti-Christian indoctrination and come under withering criticism for their “naïve” or “ignorant” beliefs. Some lack the strength of conviction to stand firm in the face of it.  Others, hearing “new” ideas, feel they have not been given all the “facts” by religion and turn away because they lack the knowledge to debate what they hear in defense of themselves and their faith. I am praying for my grandchildren as they move toward their college years, that they have been trained well,  that they will not be silent when systems are unjust, and that God will go before them in an increasingly hostile world for Christians. I know that I can count on that third prayer being answered…..it is one of God’s promises!
From Mike Adams’ bio  http://townhall.com/columnists/mikeadams/
“In addition to lecturing on the First Amendment, Mike Adams is actively involved in legal challenges to campus censorship. Represented by the ADF, he won a landmark First Amendment case before the 4th Circuit in Richmond, VA. Decided in 2011, Adams v UNCW held that professors publishing columns and giving speeches have the full protection of the First Amendment when discussing matters of public concern. Hence, when professors report such activities as part of their annual review, tenure, or promotion materials the university does not have license to discriminate on the basis of the professor’s viewpoint.
Dr. Adams’ third book, Letters to a Young Progressive, was published in April of 2013. In 2014, Adams v. UNCW finally went to trial to determine whether the university violated the First Amendment in 2006 by denying his promotion to full professor in retaliation for his speeches and columns on TownHall.com. He was represented at trial by David French of the ACLJ and Travis Barham of ADF. On March 20th, the federal jury ruled in Adams favor. On April 8th, the court ordered UNCW to promote Adams and give him seven years back pay. He spent most of the money on guns made by Browning, guitars made by Fender, and amps made by Mesa Boogie.”

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