November 19, 2010

Kevin Bauder Reassigned and Relieved From Administrative Responsibilities

Dr. Kevin Bauder has been reassigned to a newly created position as Research Professor of Systematic Theology. Kevin Bauder “will be entirely liberated from administrative responsibilities.”1

Kevin Bauder’s Fundamentalism worth saving has proven to be a call to embrace the so-called “conservative” evangelicals. To fellowship and co-minister with Evangelicals Bauder has been writing to influence his readers to allow for, tolerate and excuse their aberrant doctrine, worldliness, disdain for biblical separatism and ecumenical compromises. As one writer noted,

Dr. Bauder does often speak on separation issues, yet seems to have blind spots in regard to disobedient brethren and ecclesiastical separation. (Matt. 18:15-18; Rom. 16:17-18; 1 Cor. 5:1-13; 2 Thess. 3:6, 14-15; Titus 1:9-10) Is there absolutely no separation here with ‘conservative’ evangelicals’? Dr. Bauder is seeking to administer the morphine of ‘Conservative Evangelicalism’ to ailing Fundamentalism to finally put it to sleep…. Militant, Separatist Fundamentalism is anathema to the Non-separatist Evangelical and in their estimation, the sooner it is buried the better.2
Dr. Gerald Priest rightly defined the tone of Bauder’s articles on the Fundamentalism/Evangelicalism discussion.
Kevin has been quite lavish in his praise of conservative evangelicals while castigating so-called fundamentalists. Yet he has spent very little time warning us about the pitfalls and problems of conservative evangelicalism…. What I fear is that we may be allowing a Trojan horse into the fundamentalist camp. And after a while, if we keep going down this track, any significant difference between conservative evangelical and the fundamentalist institutions may disappear. Fundamentalists will become even ‘nicer’ to the conservative evangelicals and they in turn will appear more ‘respectable’ to the fundamentalists. It may be that some fundamentalists desire this. But then, would they not also have to forfeit the label?
On learning of Bauder’s reassignment one pastor said he is more concerned than ever because Bauder’s power is not linked to any ability to gather a large student body or preach dynamic messages. His power is in his pen. More time for him to engage in writing may bring more problems.

Central acknowledges that funding a man to exclusively research and write “involves a substantial financial commitment.” Because of Bauder’s redefining biblical separatism3 to brush aside the obvious reasons to restrain oneself from promoting and embracing Evangelicalism, because he redefines biblical separatism to legitimize fellowship and unity with Evangelicals, because he castigates Fundamentalism with impunity, my hope will be that funding for his new position will dry up quickly.


1) Central Seminary Creates Research Professorship

2) The Convergence of Fundamentalism and Non-Separatist Evangelicalism by Pastor Tod Brainard, The Projector, Fall 2010. (To appear at IDOTG in the coming days.)

3) Kevin Bauder has strayed far from and is trying to influence the current and next generation away from the application of the principles biblical separatism of his CBTS predecessors Dr. Richard V. Clearwaters and Dr. Ernest Pickering.

For related reading see-

Kevin Bauder and Dave Doran to Join Mark Dever at Lansdale: Is This a Fundamentalism Worth Saving?

Do Fundamentalists & Evangelicals, “Believe, Preach and Defend the [Same] Gospel?”

Kevin Bauder, “It Won’t Fly With Us Who Know…”

Excusing the Brother For the Sake of His Sister: Is This the New “Fresh Application” of Biblical Separatism?

A Letter From Dr. Richard V. Clearwaters to Kevin Bauder

John MacArthur Refreshes Kevin Bauder’s Short term Memory: “Conservative” Evangelicals” Extended Christian Recognition to Roman Catholics


  1. Wow what a turn of events!

    I didn't see this coming. I wonder what the long term fallout will be? Will this be a warning to those who would open the door to other "trojan horse" influences or a herald of hope to those who want to bring them in?

    I'm not sure this is really discipline of the man... it seems much more political to me. Much like Tony "The Lawman" Miano dropping the "Reformed" title for his theology but continuing to hold to the precepts.


  2. Kev:

    What to make of it depends on whom you ask. Some may see the reassignment as somewhat punitive over what he has been advocating in the blogs and conferences. Some may feel he might have been dismissed altogether, but the board decided on this as an alternative. If a primary role of seminary president is to enlarge the student body, that has not gone well. As I say it depends on who you ask and everyone has an opinion. In any event change has come to CBTS. No word on who or even if the president's office will be filled.


  3. Received via e-mail from a friend/pastor for inclusion in this thread:

    So the man whose pen has brought about a swirl of controversy to the seminary is the same one who the seminary believes should be freed up to better enable him to get his message out to a larger audience. That doesn't make sense at all.

    It does remind me of a certain national politician whose message of American unexceptionalism was soundly rejected by the electorate only to believe that he needed to do more to get that message to the people. May the results be the same for both.

  4. Time will tell as to the fallout of these events. The press release did not specify who would be the one to determine what Dr. Bauder will research, whether Dr. Bauder will or someone else such as the new president or the CBTS board. That may have big ramifications as to the level of his continued voice of convergence with the CE.

  5. I am reading Bauder's new assignment and thinking it can't possibly be punitive. I would love to have a job like that. But that's just me.

    It does remind me of a certain national politician whose message of American unexceptionalism was soundly rejected by the electorate only to believe that he needed to do more to get that message to the people. May the results be the same for both.

    I usually abstain from venturing in to the political on this blog but I have to say this garners a hearty amen!


  6. Jan:

    Thanks for that. It is highly unlikely there was anything punitive about the pending change in the roles. Some might think there may have been some punitive element driving the change, but I have no reason to believe that.

    Over the past few months, however, I’ve heard from two men who had the impression that there may have been some distress among some CBTS board members over certain themes by Bauder in his on line articles and that he may have been withstood in meetings.

    All we know for sure is that he is being relieved, the announcement, which I quoted says, “liberated” from his administrative duties to concentrate on the research and writing assignment.


  7. Brian:

    Bauder will be under the auspices of Central. With this new assignment they may tighten the reins on him, but I suppose we’ll never know. I am open to anyone who has first hand knowledge of the structure sharing the details in some public forum.