My Little Light
just trying to let it shine

The Professor

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William Rutherford had taught World History since graduating from college three decades ago.  History was his passion.



As the little community college William taught at began to grow there were too many students that needed a course in World History for simply one teacher.  So, the college hired a new teacher.  William liked Jim a lot, but over the last few years he began to get a little jealous of Jim.  It seems Jim was a lot younger, and from what he heard a lot more charismatic. Students tried hard to be the first to sign up for Jim's World History class.  William had been relegated to the second choice.  Those who ended up in Williams class were disappointed.


As the new semester approached William began to brainstorm.  He wanted to find a way to make his class the premiere World History class.  He couldn't make himself any younger.  He didn't have Jim's personality.  It simply wasn't him.  Finally an idea came to him.  At first he had some misgivings about his idea.  The more he thought about it though the more attractive it became.  After all, the World History department had always been his, and he was tired of losing it to this newcomer.



During the first couple of weeks of the new semester Williams class was delighted to find that his class had changed.  To start 50% of their grade was based on nothing more than attendance.  If they never missed a class they were already assured of at least a 50% in his course.  Any student that could convince someone else to join his class received another 10%.



William also started using movies, video clips, and any other form of entertainment he could find to teach parts of his class.  Often times he found that parts of the movies and videos weren't exactly true to the historical facts.  However, he could pass them off well enough that no one really questioned it.  Most were even fooled.



It wasn't long before William began to hear that the students in Jim's class wish they had taken his class instead.



Over the next couple of years William's class became not only the most popular of the two World History Classes, but the most popular class on campus.  It seems all the students loved the fact that he made the class so easy.  They enjoyed the fact that his class was more about entertainment that any real learning or work.  It was an easy grade and a good time.



Ocassionally William would have a twinge of guilt over the way he was running his class.  He knew his students were learning a very watered down version of the truth.  In fact, he sometimes wondered if his class could really be called World History anymore.  Many of the teachings were at the very least questionable, and some of them blatantly false.  There was very little full truths in his class anymore.



William could always assuage his guilt and questions though by the realization that every seat in his class was always full.  He was idolized by all the students.  William was number 1 and his job was secure. Surely a distorted watered down version of the truth was better than no truth at all, right?
10 comments:

Mark,
Aaaahhhh....awesome metaphor of the institutional church system and pastors within them. I saw the connection immediately.

Exactly what pastors (the professor) have done in watering down the true message into one that becomes false...just so to have a higher attendance of people (students). The professor (and I believe many, although not all) blatently knowing they are not speaking (teaching) the Truth.

Good stuff, Mark!

Blessings,
~Amy :)
http://amyiswalkinginthespirit.blogspot.com


Thanks yet again Amy.

It's always good to know that the metaphor isn't lost. That's always something I wonder about when I put these things on my blog.

So what do you think. Is a distorted watered down version of the truth better than no truth at all?


Yes, hard to miss the allusion. I have a piece of my own writing up over at my place right now.

You could have a look at my blog "A Doorman's Journal" too. I'd be interested in your perceptions.


Doorman - I look forward to checking that out later.

Still no one has answered the question. Is a distorted watered down version of the truth better than none at all? I only ask because I have had some conversations with people from traditional churches who will admit to me that their church teaches a watered down gospel, but they believe that is better than none at all.

I disagree with them.


Ahhh the metaphor - well done!! So true ...again.


"Often times he found that parts of the movies and videos weren't exactly true to the historical facts."

I think that these are great tools for taaching truth and opportunities to contrast truth with misconception and anecdotalisms.

I wish that teachers of all sorts would get a bit creative.. so much of their messages are boring and uninteresting.

How is it that we think that it is okay to communicate truth in a boring matter.. possibly we dishonor truth when we present it that way? Seems that truth is something that should be communicated with a passion that is interesting and draws people in.

Just a thought..


Bob - I agree with your thoughts there actually. Looking at the story I should have added something. I meant to add that William didn't want to correct any of the facts because it was more convenient to ignore them. The scripted parts kept his students fascinated.


Mark, I've only just found this blog after reading a newsletter of Keith Giles. It is refreshing and interesting to read of the struggles others have had. In fact, in answer to your question...Is a watered down version of the truth better than no truth at all? Hmmm, I guess I would have to say yes...but and still...the Lord will reveal and work with those who hear Him call...and don't give in to the temptation of thinking that they are capable in and of themselves to make things right...but as they continue to speak the truth with love and light...He is glorified and we are changed for the good to glorify Him more...and yes...I left a church...where I found out after I left...there was abusive leadership...hidden behind the scenes...and now it has been quite the journey of sifting through the word in prayer and tears...and I trust in Him completely that He is even speaking...to those who abuse and tell watered down truth...to speak not for their glory...but only His. Blessings as you continue to listen and obey His truth. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life...light.


Write - I sincerely hope you are right when you say that a watered down version of the truth is better than none at all. I still feel that the 'truth' taught in most churches today is so watered down that it does little good. It nearly pushed me away from Christ completely. I realize that me be just me. I just feel that it has become so watered down that it is indistinguishable from a lie.

Thanks for stopping by. I look forward to checking out your site in the near future.

Blessings,
Mark


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Kentucky, United States
I love to write. Whether it's short stories, poems, or something else altogether I hope you will enjoy them. If you feel so inclined I would love to have you leave a comment on the things you read.

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