Science in Christian Perspective
Letter to the Editor
A Defence of IV Press and Franky Schaeffer
4421 Old Hearne Road
Bryan, Texas 77803
From: JASA 37
(June 1985): 127
I am writing this letter to express my concerns about the views expressed in the editorial section and letters section in the December 1984 Journal. I have been an ASA member for eight years and have had a chance to attend one national meeting (1980). While I remain committed to ASA I cannot allow the attacks upon IVCF to continue without some response. I think the mistake IV Press made was in publishing Brave New People in the first place.
The idea presented was that Dr. Jones is a committed Christian (with which I agree) and therefore his views should be presented to the Christian world (with which I also agree). However this does not mean that any specific publisher must somehow publish something that it does not agree with.
The idea of toleration seems to have become the ultimate virtue in some Christian circles. However we must recognize that Christians can and do make mistakes. Just since Dr. Jones is a committed Christian does not make his views correct. I do not think that toleration of error is a virtue. Along with many others of IVCF's constituency I think his views in that book are in error. When a publisher publishes a book, to many people it is seen as endorsing that book. For that reason, I am glad that the book was withdrawn.
I do not think that the activities of Franky Schaeffer and his supporters were acting in an unchristian fashion. Paul also told us to "speak the truth in love." (Eph. 415). Sometimes the truth hurts, and speaking the truth will be seen as harsh by those who do not want to live by the truth.
I am most concerned by the tone of the editorial and letter. They seem to imply that the only way to be "open-minded" is to agree with them. That is in itself a closed-minded position. I enjoy the interplay of ideas that occur in our journal. However I also believe that there are not several Christian positions on every issue. On those issues we must speak out as clearly and forcefully as possible. If that involves "political pressure" then I am all for it.
I do not think that IV Press's decision will bring about "grim and dark days" for us all. I think it is a very positive statement that the Christian faith has content, and that those who do not agree with that content cannot receive our endorsement.