ICYMI: Tim Keller was to have been honored with a major award from Princeton Theological Seminary this year. Princeton is a mainstay of the PCUSA, the liberal wing of American Presbyterianism. Keller was until recently pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian in New York City, one of the largest and most influential congregations in the PCA, the conservative wing of American Presbyterianism. The PCA does not ordain women or gays. Because of this, the decision to honor Keller stirred up no small amount of controversy in PCUSA circles. Many felt that a school like Princeton had no business honoring someone of Keller’s political/theological commitments. Princeton heard its critics and chose to rescind the honor.
Is it at all possible, in this day and age, to honor someone for actual achievements, regardless of whether said person is in agreement with our political/theological commitments? Is it at all possible to listen to a reasonable argument, such as that made by seminary president Craig Barnes that it is “a core conviction of our seminary to be a serious academic institution that will sometimes bring controversial speakers to campus because we refuse to exclude voices within the church. Diversity of theological thought and practice has long been a hallmark of our school”?
Progressive Christians: This is unacceptable. This is just like that fiasco a couple of years back when Louie Giglio was to have given the invocation at Obama’s inauguration, until some of you went snooping around in the sermon archives and found some things he had said about homosexuality–over a decade ago!!!!!!!!!!–that you did not like, and just like that he was off the program.
Progressive Christians: If you behave like this, you become just as intolerant, just as close-minded, just as unwilling to listen to reason as you have ever accused us conservatives of being. That is unacceptable.