I recently read a wonderful post by Phil Johnson entitled “How I Learned the Hard Way that Pious Gullibility is No Virtue.” I am generally not interested in reading long blog posts but this one is well-written, readable, and makes a clear point at the end. Check it out for yourself.
This story has been covered by many outlets and I just wanted to bring closure to the stories that I mentioned previously. Christianity Today, the Associated Press, and other news agencies have relayed information from Liberty University that confirm Ergun Caner has “made factual statements that are self-contradictory.” They fall short of calling his actions lies. He will still be employed by Liberty University but will no longer be the dean of their seminary.
Liberty University’s actions and statement provide very little clarity to this situation.
Dr. Jim West, one of the most interesting and incendiary bloggers has commented on the Liberty University saga containing Ergun Caner. In his typically sardonic style Dr. West has pointed out that this situation is about honesty and integrity. Unfortunately, Ergun Caner’s mistakes (allegedly) will affect not only himself but the institution at which he serves.
Also, “it’s not wise to ignore the insights of the blogosphere.”
I am still withholding judgment on the internet musings (see here, here, or here – to list only a few) regarding Ergun Caner. However, I knew the allegations that he intentionally embellished his testimony (post 9/11) were gaining steam when Christianity Today and other “mainstream” news agencies began reporting on this story.
It appears that Liberty University is taking these allegations seriously as well and have formed an internal investigative committee to study all the facts involved.
I suspect this is such an important story because a seminary president at one of America’s leading evangelical universities is being accused of lying and manipulating Islamiphobia for the purpose of gaining celebrity and expertise.
If these allegations prove to be true it will be another example in the long line of Christian celebrity moral failures (another reason that “celebrity” is antithetical to the servant nature of Christianity).