An Annual One-day Christian Conference
for Jr. Hi and High School Students
(A Conservative Christian Analysis)
The following information was extracted from the Details Page on the website:
Worship Band- NEXUS. No information or description was available nor could it be found on the internet.
Wikapedia has a pretty good article on the subject of Spoken Word Art, including the history. It seems to be a spin-off of the hip-hop genre and is noticeably antagonistic to mainstream culture and values. Just to be fair, this artist in this context might be good but there is insufficient info available to make any kind of informed judgment.
BEN STEPHENS – Keynote Conference Speaker. There is no biographical, philosophical, theological or any other kind of “ical” information provided by Turn Your Campus about this speaker (or about the conference in general). The only thing that can be known about him from Turn Your Campus is that he is the featured speaker. There is no title, no subject, no description and no text provided for this event. However, Ben Stephens can easily be located on the internet. Here are some things about the man that can be discerned by his credentials.
- Our Church is commonly known as being Holiness or Pentecostal in nature…
- Our Church… had its origin within the General Association to the Baptist Church.
The Church of God in Christ believes in and practices Divine Healing. It is a commandment of Jesus to the Apostles. Healing is still practiced widely and frequently in the Church of God in Christ…
Feet Washing is practiced and recognized as an ordinance in our Church…Ben Stephens’ Bible education and theological training is from institutions that purposefully identify themselves as interdenominational, some of which have slipped into liberalism and/or apostasy.
The majority of his church, parachurch and academic affiliations and ministries are interdenominational in nature and predominantly and, in some cases, militantly, ethnocentric in origin and purpose.
His church is theologically apostolic and Pentecostal.
There are over 30 workshops listed for the Turn Your Campus event. Here is a sampling of some of the titles:
- Building a Faith That's Your Own
- Building Relationships with Pre-Believers
- Creative Prayer
- Cutters and Self Mutilation
- Homosexuality: A Real Discussion
- Jesus and Sex - What is the Connection
- Kingdom of Me vs. Kingdom of God
- Know Your Rights on Campus
- Understanding Islam
- Using MySpace as God's Space/Facebook
There are several organizations cooperating in this venue but the two major sponsors or partners are Biola University and Youth for Christ both of which are moderately evangelical at best and interdenominational in their reach and purpose.
For the sake of clarity and fairness, this youth conference might be good. I don’t know. I have spent over eight hours in the past week researching the event and trying to locate any articles, critiques or reliable testimonials about this event or any of them from the past. I could find nothing substantive.
From what little information there is available about the music and featured artists, a reasonable assumption is that it will resemble the typical, high energy, excessive volume, sub-cultural hip-hop/rap style.
I would hesitate to make any personal judgments about the speaker's racial attitudes or biases if he has any but it is interesting to note that the majority of his ministerial or professional associations are overtly and sometimes militantly, ethnocentric.
From a theologically fundamental, Baptistic Christian viewpoint, I would be suspicious of the interdenominational, liberal, charismatic, Pentecostal doctrinal positions of the speaker and the sponsors especially as they might influence the workshop topics.
As a parent, I would be reticent to allow my children to attend. As a Church leader, I would advise anyone who asked me, regardless of their denominational bent, to not allow their children to attend simply because there is not enough information available for responsible parenting.
And, I would think that a youth worker would not engage or encourage his young people to participate due to insufficient information to make an informed decision about its social or spiritual appropriateness.
From a fundamentalist church leader or pastoral perspective, I would be extremely suspect of this event’s doctrinal or theological safety, accuracy, value or appropriateness to endorse or participate in it unless or until the event promoters are more forthcoming and descriptive in their content, doctrine and purpose.