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  • Serious revolt against Marxist doctrine on campus, new push for 'image of God'

    'It has all the trappings of a new religion'

    Alumni from Biola University have launched a petition asking administrators of the evangelical Christian institution to affirm their biblical foundation and repudiate a petition that pushes critical race theory.

    The alumni describe the Marxist theory as "a postmodern ideology that perceives people as not essentially equal and rejects our common humanity being grounded in the image of God."

    The Change.org petition is addressed to Biola's president, Barry Corey, and comes from "proud alumni, donors, and supporters."

    Their "deep concern" is over a previous petition by a group called Biola Alumni Standing in Solidarity, or BASIS, that asks the university to address the Black Lives Matter movement by creating an "anti-racism task force." BASIS calls for students to attend "racial reconciliation" sessions and to train all "staff, faculty, and student leaders" in "anti-racism." It also advocates working with "anti-racist" authors and speakers to address students.

    The opposing petition, from Biola Alumni Standing for Equality, warns that the critical race theory associated with the BLM movement casts institutions as inherently racist and regards race itself as a concept used by white people to further their economic and political interests at the expense of people of color.

    The new petition warns that criticial race theory "promotes an alternative gospel whereby we must seek salvation by deconstructing existing societal structures – forcibly if need be – as the primary means of producing moral character, or conquering sin, instead of seeking transformation of the heart through the inner-working of the Holy Spirit, the practice of our Christian faith, and the individual pursuit of virtue."

    It "has all the trappings of a new religion."

    Further, it "assumes an oppressor-oppressed dichotomy and thus promotes endless, inescapable division" and it denies "the fundamentally Christian proclamation of essential human equality grounded in our shared identity as image bearers of God, but which is corrupted by the reality of sin."

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    By adopting a socially progressive and politically correct agenda, the petition asserts, Biola would be "abetting in an understanding of ethics and morality that transforms 'resentment' and 'vengeance' into virtues, and makes shaming and the use of ad hominem a legitimate alternative to reasoned dialogue."

    The fact that those who signed the first petition were educated at Biola, the opponents said, "is not a good harbinger of things to come, and raises many red flags about the current academic climate in the undergraduate departments."

    The tone and attitude, the petition said, were "imbued with a deeply worldly, arrogant, and aggressive sense of entitlement and disregard for authority."

    Racism is a problem, the second petition acknowledged, but "it is the Christian religion, with Christ as its center that can lead us into a new era of peace and restoration, not a theory that acts as an alternative religion to the true Gospel."

    A good response, the writers said, would be to have students sign a pledge not to promote critical race theory and set up debates to discuss various issues. They suggest inviting speakers such as Larry Elder, Jesse Lee Peterson and Thomas Sowell to campus and disciplining faculty members who subvert Christian teachings.

    A similar concern was raised at nearby Azusa Pacific University in December 2018, when two members of the board of trustees resigned, charging the institution had "drifted" from its foundation and mission, and was at odds with its written policies, statement of faith and the Bible itself.

    One of the board members, Raleigh Washington, a prominent pastor known for his leadership of the Promise Keepers men's movement, spoke with WND at the time. He said he had regularly confronted the board over the previous six years with evidence that the administration and a substantial portion of the faculty were promoting a progressive ideology that clashed with the institution's statement of faith and core principles.