southern kuyper

I just had an extremely stimulating day with the students, recent graduates, and friends of David Naugle at the 12th annual Paideia conference at Dallas Baptist University.  There may not be anything else like it.  Nearly 40 students read papers at this day and a half long event, and the ones that I attended were provocative and well done.  Dave said his goal is to create a program that celebrates the life of the Christian mind–a sort of Kuyperian retreat in the deep south–and he has achieved it.   

Here’s how good his program is.  A couple participants questioned my use of Alvin Plantinga’s argument against naturalism in tonight’s lecture, and when we couldn’t reach consensus, we agreed that they could wait until Alvin himself comes next February and they can pursue the argument with him personally.  Pretty cool, huh?

Dave has put the essence of what he is trying to accomplish at DBU in his recent book, “Reordered Loves, Reordered Lives,” which is essential reading for anyone looking to integrate the Christian worldview with the life of the mind and their daily walk with Christ.  Dave is a premier Christian educator, and his transparency and practical advice in this book is enormously helpful, especially for college students and those who teach or minister to them.  Highly recommended.







8 responses to “southern kuyper”

  1. […] Doug Haslam put an intriguing blog post on southern kuyperHere’s a quick excerpt…and well done.  Dave said his goal is to create a program that celebrates the life of the BChristian/B mind–a sort of Kuyperian retreat in… […]

  2. Just passing by.Btw, you website have great content!

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  3. I am so encouraged to hear that this kind of thing is going on. I pray some will end up as pastors of local churches, missionaries, or even seminary professors.

  4. Dr. Wittmer: This sounds awesome. What was your lecture about? And if the students questioned your use of Kuyper, please tell me when they’re holding the seance. I’d like to save the date.

    But now in all seriousness, this school sounds really vibrant! Naugle’s book sounds fantastic, too.

    btw, i agree with Mike website have great content!

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    *bad jokes

  5. I pray that I don’t end up a pastor, a missionary, or a seminary professor. (Haha, just a friendly joke.)

    It was nice to meet you this weekend, Dr. Wittmer. It is cool to hear an outside opinion of our conference. Truly, it is an incredible blessing.

  6. Hey, Dr. Whittmer! We just loved having you at the conference. I’ve been attending the Paideia conference since 2003 and presenting since 2004. I wouldn’t miss it. Absolutely the highlight of my year! I think you saw why.

    I was that chatty guy with the ‘Last Temptation of Christ’ t-shirt acting as my paper’s shameless “promotion machine” as you termed it. And yes, it’s still running. 😉

    Thank you also for your kind (and very true!) words about Dr. Naugle. I hope to be teaching at DBU soon for the simple fact that being a student there and specifically being a part of Paideia has thoroughly changed my life. I can’t measure the importance of the work that Dr. Naugle and so many other great professors are doing there. They are a real treasure.

    I’m also sending you an e-mail with other thoughts from the conference. Thanks again for all you’re doing. It means so much to have a voice like yours in the Great Conversation!

  7. Sara: I like the cut of your jib. Now I KNOW that place is vibrant.

  8. Just a word to Wittmer fans everywhere to note that he did a terrific job at our conference this weekend. Refreshingly bracing material presented in the most accessible and caring manner. Students love him! Thanks, Mike.

    And we are excited about Alvin Plantinga coming, and before him, Pastor Mark Foreman, pastor of North Shore Calvary Chapel, Carlsbad, CA (Mark is father of tim and jon foreman of Switchfoot), and also we are looking forward to hosting Jamie Smith from Calvin College at next year’s conference.

    Check out our vision and activities at my website: and see!

    David Naugle

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