Monday, December 22, 2008

The King's College Puzzles New York City

The King's College is in the news again. But it's the same story that everyone writes. The Village Voice. The Washington Post. Now The New York Times. ("In a Worldly City's Tallest Tower, a College With a Heavenly Bent," December 19, 2008. The title as it originally appeared was "For Evangelical College, Home is Where the Sin Is." I wonder what went into that editorial change of mind.)

They just can't get over the fact that an Evangelical Christian college would wade into a city that provides so many opportunities for sin. (Never mind the cultural, intellectual, media, and business opportunities.)

But the opportunity for sin is not isolated in any one city or in cities in general. Sin is in every heart and makes its own opportunities. You can't run away from sin any more than you can run away from your shadow.

These reporters marvel that The King's College doesn't have a long list of rules and that yet they don't exercise the licentious freedom that other college students do. That is because being a Christian is not just a church affiliation or an ideology, as these reporters imagine it is. It is a work of grace in the human heart that drives out old loves and introduces new ones, viz., a love for Christ and for all that he loves. A Christian who is growing spiritually is a Christian who is growing in those new loves. The Westminster Shorter Catechism (Q. 35) tells us that sanctification is "the work of God's free grace, whereby we are renewed in the whole man after the image of God, and are enabled more and more to die unto sin, and live unto righteousness." I see this in my students.

So the story reports Jonathan Seidl, a senior at the college, saying, “One of the reasons we’re not interested in getting drunk like ‘typical’ college students is because our faith teaches us that being responsible, and in some cases abstaining from those things, offers the most fulfilling life.” The reporter adds, "The same applied, several students said, to premarital sex."

But I'm glad we got the New York Times before the paper goes belly up. Perhaps The New York Sun, a much better newspaper, will return to take it's place.

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