Don's Weekly Columns

University to Banish 'Discriminatory' Book into the Wilderness

Edinburgh University is set to ban Bibles from its student halls of residence amid concern that the Holy Book is “discriminatory” and makes students of other faiths feel unwelcome. The move is the result of protests from the students’ association, and is being considered in an effort to pursue a policy of “evenly supporting all faiths”, a university spokesman said yesterday.

A Gideon Bible is traditionally placed in every new student’s room at the start of the academic year and there are currently around 2,000 Bibles in the Pollock Halls campus on the edge of Holyrood Park. Their distribution is now seen as inappropriate and potentially offensive to non-Christians. The student body is drawn from 120 countries and represents a broad spectrum of faiths, it is argued.

Ruth Cameron, president of the Edinburgh University Students’ Association, said yesterday that it was important that students from different cultures were made to feel welcome. “The student association strongly believes in the importance of ensuring that students of all faiths feel at home in their university accommodation,” she said. “We simply don’t want to be seen promoting one religion over another. This is not about attacking Christianity. It is about respecting diversity.”

The proposal will be voted on by the student association and is then expected to be rubber stamped by the university. Two years ago Edinburgh University stopped saying prayers at its graduation ceremonies for similar reasons.

This year Stirling University was forced to abandon plans to remove 6,000 Bibles from its student halls after a storm of protest from offended Christians. As a compromise the university instead invited all religious groups to supply copies of their holy texts.

The Reverend John Munro, a former chaplain at Stirling University, said at the time that withdrawing any book from a place of study smacked of intolerance. “I think there’s an agenda here, seemingly politically correct, but there’s actually a hostility towards faith by those who have none. This is repeating the worst errors which the Christian faith used to have,” he said.

Isn’t it amazing what is happening in the world? Here is a university, like so many others, that was founded by Christian believers, and based on the Christian philosophy, but it is now seeking to distance itself from that heritage because it does not want anyone to be offended. Here in America, many of the our universities were established on Christian principles, and as Christian colleges. Yet, few would today recognize them as remotely “Christian.”

I wonder if any Moslem universities will be removing the Koran from its shelves, or allowing the Bible to be placed there in order to promote diversity? I wonder if Hebrew University will remove the Torah? Why is it that so called Christians are so willing to compromise in the face of such persecution? In America, it seems increasingly true that you can disparage Christianity, but you better not say anything negative about Islamism, or Judaism, or even Wicca for that matter!

Unfortunately, many “believers” no longer believe in the message of the Bible as the inspired, infallible Word of God. The Bible is just another of many religious books. It is in fact a shame, and a disgrace on the very name of Christian, to claim to be Christian and yet reject as authoritative the book that tells us about Christ!

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