Greg Bahnsen's "dismissal" from RTS

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sastark

Puritan Board Graduate
The Wikipedia article on Bahnsen says "Greg Bahnsen's vocal advocacy of Christian Reconstructionism and theonomy was highly controversial during his lifetime, and a public disputation pertaining to theonomy led to his dismissal from the Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson, Mississippi."

Can anyone give me more information about his "dismissal"? The history behind it?

A few points for clarification:

I'm NOT asking for slander of Bahnsen (I respect the man).
I'm NOT asking for slander of RTS (I think it's a good institution).
I AM asking for more information about why Bahnsen was dismissed. Was it because of his views on theonomy, as Wikipedia states? Are there any official RTS documents related to this? Or, did Bahnsen ever write about this event?

Also, I searched and could not find any previous threads about this specific topic, but I could have missed something, so if I'm rehashing an old topic, please let me know.
 

ChristianTrader

Puritan Board Graduate
I think one thing to note, is that I believe that Dr. Bahnsen was not "dismissed" but instead his contract was not renewed.

CT
 

timmopussycat

Puritan Board Junior
I think one thing to note, is that I believe that Dr. Bahnsen was not "dismissed" but instead his contract was not renewed.

CT

I was (and continue to be) suspicious of the word "dismissal". A loaded word, for sure.

The words "contract was not renewed" are precisely how Dr. DeWitt (Bahsnen's dept. chair at the time) has described the matter to me. As far as I know no public statement of why this happened has ever been made by RTS.
 

Romans922

Puritan Board Professor
This ('Contract not renewed') has happened to other professors, one during my time there, as well.
 

Seb

Puritan Board Junior
Sounds like someone needs to edit the Wikipedia article and bring it back in line with what actually happened. The way it's currently worded seems so scandalous.
 

timmopussycat

Puritan Board Junior
Sounds like someone needs to edit the Wikipedia article and bring it back in line with what actually happened. The way it's currently worded seems so scandalous.

That entry (at least as of today) is actually fairly low key and perhaps even accurate. Certainly David Bahnsen's bio of his father seems to imply the same thing (Bahnsen, D. The Life of Dr. Greg L. Bahnsen, in The Standard Bearer, p. 16).
 

fredtgreco

Vanilla Westminsterian
Staff member
I think one thing to note, is that I believe that Dr. Bahnsen was not "dismissed" but instead his contract was not renewed.

CT

There is no tenure at RTS. Every prof is on a one year contract.

It should also be stated that it is not a common event to not be renewed.
 
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