(NOTE: Danny Akin has graciously responded to this post. His comment is #113.)
(Editor’s Note: I have closed comments on his topic. We’ve all said our piece. There is no value to mud-slinging and I doubt much productive will come from continuing this discussion. If we have done nothing else, we have established that contrary to what was insinuated, there is no significant drinking problem at SEBTS. )
I just posted on why I love blogging, and soon after posting, I was directed by a friend to Peter Lumpkins’ latest post, “Here Come Those Boozin’ [young, cool, and hip] Baptists: A Problem for Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary?”
Peter has written often criticizing Danny Akin and Southeastern Seminary. Nothing wrong with that. He has the right to his opinion, even if it differs from mine. And this post was typical of his criticisms of SEBTS. But, the last section of this post was an example of what I believe Baptist blogging shouldn’t be or do. It is irresponsible and sensationalistic.
Akin’s post argued for abstention from alcohol, but not from the prohibitionist perspective, which Peter holds to. Akin arrives at the same place as Lumpkins, but takes a different road to get there. While I do not agree with his analysis, it is legitimate debate, right up until the point where Peter writes:
Could it be…
Could it possibly be…
Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary is facing a crisis…perhaps a crisis where students are, shall we say, a bit more corinthianistic than they would like?…
Is this possible? After all, when one of the faculty members rhetorically asks, over the cyberways, “Is alcohol a good thing? Sure! If it is taken in moderation,” would it be surprising if a crisis were brewing amongst the student-body? Not from my side of the creek.
Could it be, similar to Shurden’s, catchy phrase above, Southeastern is sounding the alarm: “Here come those boozin’ Baptists!”?
I don’t know.
I do know this.
When one makes the consumption of intoxicants for pleasurable purposes, a consumption of which is widely accepted within our culture, into a mere unimportant, insignificant third-tier, non-gospel-centered, libertarian, amoral issue, what under the blue sky do you think is going to happen? (highlights are mine)
He has every right to oppose Southeastern and its president. He does not have the right to raise the specter of a scandal that even he admits there is NO EVIDENCE for. It is just not right.
I would make one note – Peter wonders if the SEBTS student body is “a bit more corinthianistic than they would like?” The word “to corinthianize” is based on a Greek verb which meant “to practice sexual immorality.” I do not think that Peter means to imply that. I think he chose the wrong word to convey the idea that SEBTS might have a lot of alcohol flowing. He misuses the word, but I don’t think he is implying that there is sexual immorality rampant at the school.
I challenged him in a comment, and his answer was the kind of defense that could have made Johnny Cochran proud, parsing words and meanings.
In other words, you wrongly conclude I made an “accusation” on the issue you raised when I categorically did not. I stated some facts, asked why such and such, and then concluded it wouldn’t “be surprising if a crisis [concerning alcohol] were brewing [at SEBTS],” hardly an “accusation” as you call it. (again, highlights are mine)
Okay, you make the call. Look at the sections I highlighted above in Peter’s quotes. Does that constitute an accusation? He admits he has no evidence, but he uses insinuation to effectively accuse SEBTS of being an alcohol haven. Yes, he couched his accusation in the speculative, but it was an accusation and I think he is disingenuous to deny it.
If I said, “Could it be that Bob Smith has a pornography addiction? I don’t know.” Do you think Bob Smith would appreciate that I couched my accusation in speculation? That distinction wouldn’t mean much to the man accused. Does the fact that he added the words “I don’t know” at the end of the insinuation lessen the fact that it is an accusation?
I would renew my call to him to take it down and suggest he apologize to Danny Akin and SEBTS for making this kind of public accusation.