Looking at a website a few minutes ago, there was a mention of praying for American bishops who had yet to come to faith in Jesus Christ. The sad news is that there likely are some. The sadder news is that they are probably quite few. Why is this sad? It's an old truism that a convert to Liberal Christianity is a rare bird to find. Liberalism just does not have a lot to offer that the average sinner does not already have. Freedom to sin? Why even call it sin? A broad range of opinions? Go to any pub, flower club, or lodge! Tight camaraderie? Stop by your local Kiwanis, Rotary, or motorcycle club and get all you can handle! So why would an unbeliever want to convert from agnostic to skeptic? Liberal Christians, especially the clergy, are seldom "made," but far more often unmade. Talk with, say, an Episcopal priest about how he or she came to enter the clergy, and you will hear the same kind of "calling" story you would hear from, say, a Congregational Methodist. Later in the conversation, though, the Episcopalian might go on to reveal just how open he or she is to "truths" from any tradition except historic Christianity.
How did this happen? Once upon a time a young person heard the Lord speaking about ordained ministry, went to university, and then to seminary, and then was ordained. Along the way, however, that kid learned from respected professors things that did not come from God. Opinions were taught as fact, doubt as faith, and soon despair replaced the hope that had been his or her great motivation. Does God really speak to people? Has He ever? How could God disobey the laws of nature? All kinds of questions, crafted not to encourage honest answers or serious study, but framed to ridicule honest faith. Are there answers to such questions? Yes. Those, and the rest as well, and the answer is not "have faith." It seems, though, that the devil has his eyes closely on these schools, and on their students' "development." After all, he does know the Scriptures, and how to use what he knows. Often the one thing between an unconverted sinner and the saving grace of Christ is a Christian taking the time to bring him along. In Hebrews 6, though, we read that to bring a Christian who has turned away from the truth back to faith is a different story. So now we have churches and, in some instances, whole denominations being led and controlled by post- Christian leaders, who have had a taste of the Faith, probably with not a lot more depth than the denominational quarterlies of their childhood years, and learned to prefer the "scholarly" fairy tales of the academic and religious elite.
What's to do? Abandon the schools? God forbid! There are still some faithful schools- Wesley Biblical in Jackson, Mississippi; Wycliffe College in Toronto; Wycliffe House at Oxford; and faithful professors like Thomas Oden at Drew University in New Jersey. And, yes, there are other schools a wise person would not trust with even a stray dog. We need scholarship, now more than ever, and we need more than ever to learn to study and to pray, and pray the Lord will raise us up a new generation of faithful Christian scholars who will be equipped to defend the Faith against these mis-educated leaders and wags, and to train the Lord's Church to really be the "pillar and ground of the truth."