Opinion: Campus Underrepresents Christian Worldview
I write this article with the intention of offering constructive criticism to the University at Albany administration and out of my concern for the full learning experience of my fellow students. I posit the following: The faculty and general academia offer little to no representation of a Christian worldview.
Before I continue, I should clarify what a “Christian” worldview is. According to Cru.org (the largest Christian missionary organization in the world), it is the belief, based on biblical principles, that God created the world to glorify God; that human sin and rebellion against God has broken the world order, causing wars, destruction, racism, hatred, and other evils. That the only way this fractured world can be restored for its original intent, is through belief in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ as the only means to complete renewal. This is the worldview I subscribe to.
Generally, UAlbany academia does not recognize this worldview as a plausible or totally legitimate one, offering solely secular alternatives to world issues. For example, in political science courses, what one might learn is that liberalism, the belief in the spread of democracy and a free market, is the answer to the ills of the world. Other answers to these issues include, but are not limited to, feminism, realism, communism, socialism, relativism, secularism, Conservatism, etc.
There is legitimacy in the aforementioned ideologies; however, I have yet to meet any professor who espouses the spread of the life of Jesus Christ as a legitimate and formidable answer to the injustices and violations of human rights we constantly see in our world today from the Rohingya crisis in Myanmar to the explicit and implicit forms of racism experienced here in the United States.
This is a trend throughout the school. In the philosophy department, atheism and agnosticism run rampant; in the political science department, Christians are solely perceived as a voting block; and in the general consensus of faculty and students, humans hold the answers to the problems we’re faced with, not God.
A fellow UAlbany student [what’s the name?] mentioned to me that in his class on the New Testament, a section of the Bible, the professor was very biblically knowledgeable, but he showed little to no evidence of practicing the Christian faith. It seems a bit strange that someone who believes in the Bible wouldn’t be teaching a class on the Bible.
This general trend in the school of lack of representation of a Christian worldview is ultimately doing no favors to the student body. According to Pew Research, over 70 percent of Americans identified as Christian in 2014, along with 31.2 percent of the world, which makes it the largest group of religious observers both domestically and globally. How are UAlbany students to strive if they don’t understand what most Americans or much of the world believes? UAlbany students deserve better preparation for the outside world.
The lack of discussion on this topic also goes against university policy regarding freedom of expression as it states that the university is committed to the idea that “the widest possible scope for freedom of expression is the foundation of an institution dedicated to vigorous inquiry, robust debate, and the continuous search for a proper balance between freedom and order.” For this to be true, the university ought to take steps to recognize the Christian worldview as a legitimate worldview worthy of a hearing. Just ask the over 10 Christian clubs that can be found on campus.
So before we write off a man who lived around 2,000 years ago, who said some profound things, broke racial and gender barriers, questioned the existing world order and culture, preached the love of a Father in heaven, died for the sins and mistakes of humanity, and was raised to life again, I say we should give Jesus a shot. He changed my life, and he is perfectly capable of doing the same for others and the world.